Congressional Research Service Reports - Browse

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The Copyright Registration Requirement and Federal Court Jurisdiction: A Legal Analysis of Reed Elsevier, Inc. v. Muchnick

Description: In New York Times Co. v. Tasini, six freelance authors who had contributed articles to several publications, including The New York Times, Newsday, and Time, sued when the publishers licensed rights to copy and sell the articles to electronic databases such as Lexis/Nexis. Shortly after the Court decided Tasini, three preexisting class action infringement suits, which had been suspended pending the decision, were activated and consolidated in the U.S. District Court for the Southern District of New York. A fourth, nearly identical action was coordinated with that consolidated action. Together, these claims comprise the litigation discussed in this report.
Date: March 18, 2010
Creator: Yeh, Brian T.
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

Copyright Protection for Fashion Design: A Legal Analysis of the Design Piracy Prohibition Act (H.R. 2196)

Description: Fashion design does not currently receive explicit protection under U.S. copyright law. This report analyzes the amendments that the Design Piracy Prohibition Act would make to the Copyright Act to provide for fashion design protection. It also summarizes arguments both in favor of and against extending such protection.
Date: June 1, 2009
Creator: Yeh, Brian T.
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

Plants, Patents, and Seed Innovation in the Agricultural Industry

Description: This report offers an overview of the availability of intellectual property rights for plants, focusing upon the seed industry. It initially offers an introduction to seed innovation. The report then reviews the three intellectual property regimes applicable to plant innovation: utility patents, plant patents and plant variety protection certificates. It then details a 2001 decision of the U.S. Supreme Court, J.E.M. Ag Supply, Inc. v. Pioneer Hi-Bred International, Inc., which held that sexually reproducing plants may be subject to utility patents.
Date: September 13, 2002
Creator: Thomas, John R.
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

Copyright Term Extension: Estimating the Economic Values

Description: This report considers proposals to extend the duration of copyrights by 20 years (as in H.R. 2589 and other bills) and related proposals to charge a fee to the owners in order to receive the extension. The method of analysis is economic rather than legal. The report reviews the basic economic principals involved in copyright law and gives rough estimates of the value of copyrights on books, music, and movies produced in the 1920s and 1930s — those that would be most immediately affected by an extension of copyright terms.
Date: May 11, 1998
Creator: Rappaport, Edward B
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

Copyright Term Extension: Eldred v. Ashcroft

Description: This report examines the U.S. Supreme Court’s decision in Eldred v. Ashcroft. Plaintiffs/Petitioners challenged the constitutionality under the Copyright Clause of a law adding 20 years to the terms of existing and future copyrights. The law was upheld by both the U.S. district court and the court of appeals considering it. Among the questions before the Supreme Court was whether Congress may retrospectively extend the term of copyright for existing copyrights; and, what role and impact, if any, does the First Amendment have in determining the validity of a congressional extension of copyright terms.
Date: February 14, 2003
Creator: Jeweler, Robin
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

The Copyright Doctrine of Fair Use and the Internet: Caselaw

Description: This report examines the evolving copyright doctrine of fair use within the context of copyrighted works published or placed on the Internet. American courts have been examining the various property rights of copyright owners concurrently with the unauthorized use of these copyrighted materials by Web site operators, Internet consumers, access providers, and other interested parties. This report analyzes the early fair use copyright cases concerning Internet use, as well as the most recent judicial interpretations.
Date: March 30, 2000
Creator: Weimer, Douglas R.
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

Fair Use on the Internet

Description: No Description Available.
Date: May 21, 2002
Creator: Jennings, Christopher Alan
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

Follow-On Biologics: The Law and Intellectual Property Issues

Description: This report reviews the Biologics Price Competition and Innovation Act of 2009 (BPCIA), within the context of intellectual property and innovation issues. It provides an introduction to the biologics industry, introduces the regulatory and intellectual property provisions of the BPCIA, considers the potential market for biosimilars and possible industry responses that may arise in the wake of this legislation, and closes with concluding observations.
Date: January 15, 2014
Creator: Thomas, John R.
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

Intellectual Property Rights and International Trade

Description: This report discusses the different kinds of intellectual property rights (IPR); forms of IPR infringement; importance of IPR to the U.S. economy; estimated losses associated with IPR infringement; organizational structure of IPR protection in multilateral, regional, bilateral; U.S. government agencies involved with IPR and trade; and issues for Congress regarding IPR and international trade.
Date: July 23, 2008
Creator: Ilias, Shayerah & Fergusson, Ian F.
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

An Overview of the "Patent Trolls" Debate

Description: This report reviews the current debate and controversy surrounding "patent assertion entities" (PAEs) and their effect on innovation, examines the reasons for the rise in PAE litigation, and explores the legislative options available to Congress if it decides that these are issues that should be addressed.
Date: April 16, 2013
Creator: Yeh, Brian T.
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

Intellectual Property in Industrial Designs: Issues in Innovation and Competition

Description: This report identifies several current issues relating to intellectual property in industrial designs. It begins by describing the different sorts of intellectual property protection that apply to industrial designs. The report then identifies current issues at the interface between intellectual property and industrial designs. The report closes by reviewing the impact that sui generis rights regimes may have upon innovation and competition in the United States.
Date: July 1, 2008
Creator: Thomas, John R.
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

The Google Library Project: Is Digitization for Purposes of Online Indexing Fair Use Under Copyright Law?

Description: In December 2004, Google announced its Library Project, which was to entail digitizing, indexing, and displaying "snippets" of print books in the collections of five major libraries, among other things. The Library Project was not limited to books in the public domain (e.g., books whose terms of copyright protection had expired), and Google did not seek the permission of copyright holders, in part, because it asserted that its proposed uses were fair uses. Many authors, publishers, and other rights holders disagreed. This report provides background on the Library Project, legal issues raised by digitization and indexing projects, and the status of the litigation over the Library Project.
Date: May 5, 2010
Creator: Manuel, Kate M.
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

The Google Library Project: Is Digitization for Purposes of Online Indexing Fair Use Under Copyright Law?

Description: In December 2004, Google announced its Library Project, which was to entail digitizing, indexing, and displaying "snippets" of print books in the collections of five major libraries, among other things. The Library Project was not limited to books in the public domain (e.g., books whose terms of copyright protection had expired), and Google did not seek the permission of copyright holders, in part, because it asserted that its proposed uses were fair uses. Many authors, publishers, and other rights holders disagreed. This report provides background on the Library Project, legal issues raised by digitization and indexing projects, and the status of the litigation over the Library Project.
Date: November 27, 2009
Creator: Manuel, Kate M.
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

False Patent Marking: Litigation and Legislation

Description: This report will describe and analyze the Federal Circuit's 2009 decision that requires a per-article penalty for false marking, as well as two subsequent Federal Circuit decisions in 2010 that answer several questions that have arisen during the recent false patent marking litigation. It also identifies and discusses legislation in the 111th Congress that would amend § 292 in order to retroactively end qui tam false marking suits and with the intent of reducing the number of false marking suits filed in the future.
Date: September 20, 2010
Creator: Yeh, Brian T.
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

False Patent Marking: Litigation and Legislation

Description: This report will describe and analyze the Federal Circuit's 2009 decision that requires a per-article penalty for false marking, as well as two subsequent Federal Circuit decisions in 2010 that answer several questions that have arisen during the recent false patent marking litigation. It also identifies and discusses legislation in the 111th Congress that would amend § 292 in order to retroactively end qui tam false marking suits and with the intent of reducing the number of false marking suits filed in the future.
Date: October 20, 2010
Creator: Yeh, Brian T.
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

Follow-On Biologics: Intellectual Property and Innovation Issues

Description: This report reviews doctrinal and policy issues pertaining to follow-on biologics. The report first introduces the application of federal food and drug legislation to follow-on biologics. It next turns to the patent implications of marketing follow-on biologics. Following this review of substantive law, the remainder of the report introduces innovation policy issues pertaining to follow-on biologics.
Date: August 3, 2009
Creator: Schacht, Wendy H. & Thomas, John R.
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

Qui Tam: An Abbreviated Look at the False Claims Act and Related Federal Statutes

Description: This is a brief discussion of the constitutional questions raised by qui tam provisions; of the history of such provisions; and of the three existing, active federal qui tam statutes--the False Claims Act, 31 U.S.C. 3729-3733; the false marking patent statute, 35 U.S.C. 292; and the Indian protection provisions of 25 U.S.C. 201.
Date: August 6, 2009
Creator: Doyle, Charles
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

An Overview of the "Patent Trolls" Debate

Description: This report reviews the current debate and controversy surrounding "patent assertion entities" (PAEs) and their effect on innovation, examines the reasons for the rise in PAE litigation, and explores the legislative options available to Congress if it decides that these are issues that should be addressed.
Date: August 20, 2012
Creator: Yeh, Brian T.
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

The Google Book Search Project: Is Online Indexing a Fair Use Under Copyright Law?

Description: This report provides background on the pending litigation. Google, Inc. is digitally scanning the collections of several prominent libraries in order to create a vast searchable database of literary works. Copyright holders who have not authorized and object to the digitization have filed suit against the company.
Date: December 28, 2005
Creator: Jeweler, Robin
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

Patents and Drug Importation

Description: This report explores the intellectual property laws and policies concerning the parallel importation of patented pharmaceuticals into the United States.
Date: June 1, 2007
Creator: Thomas, John R.
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

Availability of Injunctive Relief for Standard-Essential Patent Holders

Description: This report provides an overview of the current debate over whether a holder of a patent essential to an industry standard, who has promised to license such patented technology on fair, reasonable, and non-discriminatory (FRAND) terms, may nevertheless obtain an injunction from a federal court or an exclusion order from the International Trade Commission against infringing products that implement the industry standard. The report first summarizes several fundamental principles of patent law, then discusses the relationship between standard-setting organizations and FRAND licensing.
Date: January 10, 2013
Creator: Yeh, Brian T.
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

New York Times Co. v. Tasini: The U.S. Supreme Court Affirms “Authorial” Rights in Copyright

Description: This report examines the U.S. Supreme Court’s opinion in New York Times Co. v. Tasini. This case considers whether, under the U.S. Copyright Act, 17 U.S.C. § 201(c), publishers are “privileged” to include the copyrighted articles of freelance authors in an electronic database.
Date: July 13, 2001
Creator: Jeweler, Robin
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

Patent Reform: Judicial Developments in Areas of Legislative Interest

Description: This report reviews the relationship between Congress and the courts in patent reform. It begins by offering a summary of the patent system. The report then discusses a number of topics that have been the subject of both judicial and legislative consideration. The current state of the law is then contrasted with legislative reform proposals before previous Congresses. The report closes with observations concerning the subtle interaction between legislative, administrative, and judicial actors within the patent system and their impact upon the U.S. innovation environment.
Date: January 5, 2011
Creator: Thomas, John R.
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department