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PPA Advocacy Recap - PPA Today

PPA Advocacy Recap

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By Lindsey Forson

Professional photographers in the U.S. often have a difficult time enforcing their copyright due to a one-size-fits-all copyright system in our country - a system which in reality is a much better fit for low-volume, very high-value creators such as motion picture studios and recording artists than it is for visual artists. PPA is actively advocating for a system that works for all of our nation's creators. This is just what we did during our latest trip to Capitol Hill. And hopefully our efforts will resonate with more and more legislators here and abroad.

Here are the priorities that PPA has set with regards to improving our copyright system (in no particular order): 

  1. Modernizing the U.S. Copyright Office so that it can keep up with the demands of its "customers" in this fast-paced, digital era and so that it has the authority, accountability, and administrative capacity to implement key changes; 
  2. Modifying the registration system to make the process more user-friendly and less burdensome for high volume creators including eliminating the requirement to sort images as published v. unpublished and amending the deposit requirement; and 
  3. Creating a small claims process for seeking damages for copyright infringements.

The implementation of a small claims process has been established as PPA's top legislative priority based on the concerns of our members, and we will continue to lead the charge on the Hill until this becomes a reality. The addition of a small claims option to the currently available enforcement mechanisms - which limit legal enforcement options to expensive Federal Court cases - is absolutely necessary to ensure photographers actually have viable means for recovering damages when infringements of their work occur. For a detailed descriptions of the issues PPA advocates for during meetings on Capitol Hill and at the U.S. Copyright Office, see PPA's response to the Copyright Office's recent Notice of Inquiry to the Visual Arts community.

During this week's trip, CEO David Trust and the PPA team met with key members and staff of the House Judiciary Committee to discuss these important points. Our issues were met overall with a very positive response. In most of these meetings, it was noted that opposition to our sought after improvements is likely to be very limited. Though it will take time to create the necessary legislation, we hope to see action on these issues within the next 18 months. 

See our latest advocacy stories  for more information on these meetings. Stay tuned to PPA's advocacy page  throughout the coming months. As any copyright legislation moves from Committee to the House floor, we will be calling on you to reach out to your representative. Keep up with PPA's Advocacy efforts and Be More Protected!

Lindsey Forson is PPA's Copyright & Government Affairs Coordinator.  She works with members on a daily basis addressing copyright questions and works closely with our CEO to advocate for professional photographers on Capitol Hill and to keep members informed on the issues that affect their businesses. She's new to Atlanta and spends most of her free time exploring the city (restaurants, markets, parks); spends three nights a week playing soccer and is a huge Auburn fan.

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About this Entry

This page contains a single entry by Professional Photographers of America (PPA) published on September 21, 2015 9:59 PM.

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