Thursday, December 09, 2010

Feds hint at charges for WikiLeaks' Assange | Privacy Inc. - CNET News

Feds hint at charges for WikiLeaks' Assange | Privacy Inc. - CNET News

Bathetic as it may be, I wonder whether or not the Feds will include copyright infringement among their list of charges against the WikiLeaks founder. It might stick, and the maximum penalty for knowing, repeated copyright infringement is five years in prison and a fine of $250,000 for each work.

Works are usually books, or songs, or movies, or games.

Usually, for full copyright protection, the "work" has to be registered with the Library Of Congress. Are state secrets entered into the

Can one argue that government employees' reports are "works"? Were they "works for hire" and does that make a difference? I don't know. Everything one writes is said to be instantly copyrighted to the author.

Copyright infringement is the unauthorized copying and publishing of works without the permission of the copyright owner... usually the author.

It seems to me, that the WikiLeaks problem may make passage of COICA (s~3804) much more likely.

1 comment:

Paula Lieberman said...

Government documents in the USA are public domain material. Secret documents are public domain however then are protected by restricted distribution.... consider them as the equivalent of Work for Hire with the organization paying for the Work for Hire being an entity which defines its documents as non-proprietary, but restricted in distribution....