The House of Representatives has sneaked a bill onto the floor for approval after telling us it would not be voted on this session. I, for one, intend to find out who did this when we were all paying attention to budget deficits and debates. It is probably being voted on as I write but here is the gist:
As I understand it, if the Orphan Works bill passes, any art you create and publish is no longer yours unless you pay to register it with every government entity, and then it still isn't safe if you miss one. Anyone can use your images, including your licensed designs, rubber stamp art, paintings, musical compositions, EVEN PHOTOS OF YOUR CHILDREN for any purpose they choose, whether it's printed material or porn. They just have to say they tried to find the owner and couldn't. If we let them slide this one through, what is next?
Here's a comment by one of the CHA Designer members.
You may feel that you are not affected by this because
your business is creating projects which you sell
outright, copyrights and all. Please keep in mind that
there may come a day in which you decide to, or are
presented with the opportunity to license your 3-d
design for the gift or home goods market. Wouldn't you
like to be able to protect your copyright in order to
create multiple income streams? Acting NOW will make a
difference and put in place the opportunity for
licensing your art in the future.
And if you love using beautifully designed papers
(surface art), rubber stamps, textiles, etc. in your
projects, please show support for those of us who
bring you this. Imagine no new art! Our industry
depends on art for the creation of new products.
If we are sounding desperate, it's because we are. We
need all the help we can get. Please spread the word,
make the calls, fax and write. Blog about it, ask
others to blog about it. If they can do this to us,
they can/will do it to other personal property owners.
Don't let them get away with this.
Call your representative now!!!