Organization for Transformative Works Helps Secure DMCA Exemption from U.S. Copyright Office

NEW YORK, Oct 26, 2012 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- The Organization for Transformative Works (OTW) has successfully obtained a DMCA exemption from the Librarian of Congress allowing noncommercial remix makers to use short clips from DVDs in remixes. Working with the Electronic Frontier Foundation (EFF), the OTW successfully supported a similar exemption in 2009, which was renewed with some changes.

The OTW's Legal Advocacy project was formed to protect and defend fanworks from commercial exploitation and legal challenge. The OTW believes that fanworks are creative and transformative, core fair uses, and is proactive in cases that affect the work of fan creators. This help is not limited to those fans or projects directly connected with OTW.

The EFF and the OTW, along with a number of remix creators and media studies groups, requested an exemption to allow the extraction of clips from a DVD for inclusion in noncommercial remix videos, such as fan videos, in order to support fair use. Without an exemption, the DMCA would prohibit the use of standard clip-extraction tools even as part of a fair use. The OTW solicited examples of fan videos from fans in order to create a Test Suite of transformative video works that highlight the issues involved in the DMCA restrictions.

OTW Legal Chair Rebecca Tushnet said "We are very pleased that the Register recognized the need for creators engaged in up-to-the-minute criticism and commentary to be able to use standard tools to create their new, transformative works."

"Vidding and other forms of video remix are a form of speech," said Francesca Coppa, Director of Film Studies at Muhlenberg College, and guest editor of an issue of Transformative Works and Cultures focusing on fan videos. "If we want to promote multimedia literacy, we need to let people speak the language of mass media without criminalizing them. This exemption is crucial for remix artists."

The full decision can be seen on the U.S. Copyright Office website.

Founded in 2007, the Organization for Transformative Works (OTW) is a nonprofit organization established by fans to serve the interests of fans by providing access to and preserving the history of fan works and fan culture in its myriad forms. Supported by members and volunteers internationally, the OTW advocates that fan works are transformative and that transformative works are legitimate.

SOURCE Organization for Transformative Works