ASMP — American Society of Media Photographers

The Big Deal About Copyright Small Claims Event

By September 14, 2016 News, Small Claims Report
The Big Deal About Copyright Small Claims

    Lunch and Learn

With Opening Remarks by
Rep. Judy Chu and Rep. Hakeem Jeffries

Wednesday, September 21
Rayburn House Office Building

Room TBD
Washington, DC


The program is free, but please RSVP


Self-publishing services, blogs, and other digital platforms have given individual creators countless new ways to display and distribute their works across the globe.  At the same time, when these creative works are used without permission, online and offline, the individual authors, musicians and visual artists that own these works face major hurdles to enforcing their rights in federal court-where the cost to hire an attorney and bring a claim often exceeds the damages the artist seeks.  In 2013, pursuant to a request from Congress, the U.S. Copyright Office issued a report on Copyright Small Claims, and recommended the creation of a voluntary alternative to federal court for copyright owners pursuing claims capped at $30,000.  The House Judiciary Committee then examined this issue in its July 2014 hearing, Copyright RemediesCurrently, members of the House Judiciary Committee are working on legislation to make this voluntary small claims tribunal a reality to ensure meaningful protection of all U.S. creators-not just those that can afford federal litigation.
Please join the Copyright Society, in coordination with The Congressional Caucus on Intellectual Property Promotion and Piracy Prevention (“IP Caucus”) and The Copyright Alliance, for a brown bag lunch discussion with a diverse panel of speakers including, artists, publishers, professors, and legal experts.  The panel will directly address the real impact that a small claims tribunal could have on the livelihoods of individual creators, the need for adequate safeguards to ensure merit in the claims presented to the tribunal, and the role for lawyers and law students in proposed small claims legislation.

A brown bag lunch will be provided.


Representative Judy Chu serves on the House Judiciary Committee Subcommittees on Intellectual Property and the Internet. Chu founded and co-chairs the Congressional Creative Rights Caucus.

Representative Hakeem Jeffries is a member of the House Judiciary Committee and a co-chair of the bipartisan Intellectual Property Caucus In July, he introduced bill H.R. 5757, the Copyright Alternative in Small-Claims Enforcement Act of 2016. 

Sandra Aistars, Clinical Professor at George Mason School of Law, leads the school’s Arts & Entertainment Advocacy Program and is Senior Scholar and Director of Copyright Research and Policy at its Center for the Protection of Intellectual Property.

Yvonne Bennett
, Vice President of Business and Legal Affairs at National Geographic Partners, oversees the negotiation and drafting of domestic and global program acquisition agreements.

Rick Carnes, Nashville songwriter, has served as President of the Songwriters Guild of America for over a decade. During that time, he has helped to oversee the Music Creator Administration Program and advocacy initiatives.

Tom Kennedy
, Executive Director of the American Society of Media Photographers, is an internationally known visual journalist with extensive print, broadcast, and online journalism experience. 


Nancy Wolff is CSUSA President and a Partner at Cowan DeBaets Abrahams Sheppard. Experienced in copyright, trademark and digital media law, Nancy offers full legal support to a wide range of traditional and digital media clients.

This event has been planned in accordance with Congressional Gift Rules and is intended to be a widely attended event.

Lunch sponsored by:


ca copyright alliance

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