Friday, 10 July 2015

Library of Congress copies

I have been blowing hot and cold on the question of sending the requisite 2 copies of The Missing Mondrians to the Library of Congress.

Here are a few relevant points from Wikipedia on US copyright:
  1. The book cannot be sold in the US because (although Mondrian died more than 70 years ago) the copyright for four of the illustrations will remain with the Mondrian / Holtzman Trust  until 2022-2051.
  2. Wikipedia on US copyright makes these points:
    • On fair use, nonprofit, educational and factual considerations are in my favour; 
    • Substantially goes against me as I am reproducing the whole paintings;
    • The book will not affect the sale prices of paintings.
  3. On civil penalties, damages are actual or statutory: actual would not apply, but statutory ranges from $750 to $30k, $300k if the infringement is willful. Criminal penalties also apply: up to $500k and 5 years for the first offence, $1M and/or 10 years for subsequent offences.
The case of United States v. LaMacchia 871 F.Supp. 535 (D.Mass. 1994) gave rise to the LaMacchia Loophole, which suggested that there is no copyright infringement where there is no commercial benefit. The No Electronic Theft Act (NET Act) (1997) closed the loophole, but presumably only for software.

My current thought is  to send copies of the new edition (3rd print) which includes the copyright notes and physically cover up the four pictures for which copyright has not expired. An alternative is to rewrite the sections showing the four pictures to use alternative paintings on which it has expired.