Skip to main content

Hudson Institute Releases White Paper on Copyright Office Reform

Hudson Institute

Paper proposes three solutions to improve management of the U.S. Copyright Office

WASHINGTON, DC – Hudson Institute has just released A 21st Century Copyright Office: The Conservative Case for Reform, a white paper that articulates the case for granting the U.S. Copyright Office autonomy from the Library of Congress.

A 21st Century Copyright Office examines the constitutional issues surrounding the Copyright Office’s function within the Library, reviews the history of the American copyright system, and considers the policy choices for how best to structure the Copyright Office to adequately serve consumers, innovators, creators and users.

“The American copyright system supports over $1 trillion in economic activity,” said Harold Furchtgott-Roth, Hudson Institute’s Director of the Center for Economics of the Internet. “The Copyright Office, to its detriment, must compete with all of the other priorities faced by the Library of Congress. The end result is that neglect by its parent agency has left the Copyright Office’s services woefully outdated.”

The white paper was commissioned by Hudson Institute’s Center for the Economics of the Internet, and co-written by Steven Tepp and Ralph Oman. Mr. Oman served Republican Senators Hugh Scott and Charles Mathias as chief counsel for the Senate Subcommittee on Patents, Copyrights, and Trademarks, and then served as Register of Copyrights from 1985-1993. Today he is the Pravel Professorial Lecturer in Intellectual Property and Patent Law at The George Washington University Law School.

Mr. Tepp was an attorney on the Judiciary Committee staff of then-chairman Senator Orrin Hatch and later served in a variety of senior attorney positions at the Copyright Office for nearly a dozen years. He was then Chief IP Counsel to the U.S. Chamber of Commerce Global IP Center and is now President and CEO of his own consultancy, Sentinel Worldwide. Mr. Tepp is also a Professorial Lecturer in Law at The George Washington University Law School.

“George Washington and James Madison prioritized copyright,” writes Mr. Tepp in the white paper, “but through an accident of history it became a subsidiary concern of the Librarian of Congress. It is well past time to recognize and restore the importance of copyright and the Copyright Office as a driver of creativity and economic growth in America.”

Mr. Tepp and Mr. Oman are available for media interviews. To arrange an interview, please contact Carolyn Stewart.

Related Articles

Gutting Patent Protections Won't Cure COVID-19

Adam Mossoff

To ensure that coronavirus vaccines and treatments are "available at a price affordable to all people," Congresswoman Jan Schakowsky and several other...

Continue Reading

In Google v. Oracle, the Supreme Court Should Protect Copyright in the Tech Industry

Adam Mossoff

From Mark Twain to Marvel Comics to Microsoft Windows, America has a rich history of fostering innovation and creativity with laws that have secured t...

Continue Reading

Let's Not Let Covid-19 Kill Copyright

Harold Furchtgott-​Roth & Kirk R. Arner

While COVID-19 has exacted a heavy toll on millions of people around the globe, it’s also inspired the generosity of millions more. ...

Continue Reading