One year ago, the U.S. Register of Copyrights, in coordination with the U.S. Intellectual Property Enforcement Coordinator, announced the launch of the U.S. Copyright Office's Fair Use Index (“Index”). The Index makes the principles and application of fair use more accessible and understandable to the public by providing a basic explanation of fair use as well as presenting a regularly updated searchable database of summaries of major fair use decisions. So far, over 180 U.S. fair use decisions have been summarized, spanning every appellate jurisdiction and many categories of use, from music to digitization to parody.
In the past year, the Fair Use Index has received tens of thousands of page views and has led to thousands of downloads of the Copyright Office’s case summaries. These include more than 1,000 downloads for each of the following summaries:
Rosen v. eBay, Inc. (2015)Katz v. Google Inc. (2015)Cambridge Univ. Press v. Patton (2014)Fox News Network, LLC v. TVEyes, Inc. (2015)Fox Broad. Co. v. Dish Network, LLC (2015)Kienitz v. Sconnie Nation, LLC (2014)
The Fair Use Index is not a substitute for legal advice, but is a helpful starting point for those seeking to better understand how courts across the country have applied the fair use doctrine to a variety of fact patterns. The Index is updated periodically.
The Fair Use Index may be accessed on the Copyright Office’s website at http://copyright.gov/fair-use/index.html.