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STATEMENT OF MR. ROBERT UNDERWOOD JOHNSON, SECRETARY OF THE AMERICAN (AUTHORS') COPYRIGHT LEAGUE.
Mr. JOHNSON. Mr. Chairman, it is often said in opposition to criticisms of a measure that the critics do not present their views in a definite and technical form, so that they can be thoroughly and entirely understood. I have the honor to present to the committee a draft of a proposed copyright bill which I hold in my hand, the text of which has been compiled with the additions desired by the American Copyright League and with some omissions, all carefully collected from the four bills which are now before the Houses of Congress.
This compilation has been made by Mr. R. R. Bowker, the very efficient vice-president of the Copyright League, who is at present in Europe. It has been done with a view to saving the time of this committee and presents everything that is desired by the American Copyright League, together with all the omissions desired.
present it formally, with the request that it be made a part of the record and that it may receive your very careful consideration, as I have no doubt it will.
I thank the committee for their devotion to this cause and for their long and patient efforts to arrive at a substantial copyright bill. The CHAIRMAN. Without objection, it will be placed in the record. (The compilation referred to was, by direction of the committee, made a part of the record and is as follows:)
THE COPYRIGHT BILLS, IN COMPARISON AND COMPROMISE.
THERE are now referred to the Committees on Patents of the Sixtieth Congress four copyright bills: Senator Smoot's (S. 2499) and Senator Kittredge's (S. 2900) before the Senate committee; and Mr. Currier's (H. R. 243) and Mr. Barchfeld's (H. R. 11794) before the House committee. The Smoot and Currier bills express the views of the chairmen of the two committees, Senator Smoot having succeeded Senator Kittredge as chairman of the Senate committee, and are practically the same, though with slight variance in language, both specifically excepting mechanical music from copyright. The Kittredge and Barchfeld bills are also practically alike, though with slight variations in language, both these specifically including mechanical music under copyright. The following presents, in the main, the text of the current bills in the lefthand side of the page, with such omissions and additions as would apparently make the bill a compromise acceptable to most, if not all, the interests concerned; and on the right hand of the page the omitted points and the variations of importance in the several bills. The purpose of this is to suggest a bill on which there could be general agreement, on the understanding that the two mooted points as to mechanical music and as to further restrictions in the manufacturing provision should be considered after the passage of the main measure, so as not to endanger the bill in its generally accepted features. Substantial variations from the Fifty-ninth Congress bills are shown in the text by italics or in the right-hand column. Merely verbal variations, as "moneys" for “money,” are not noted. The four bills each contain 67 sections, the seeming addition of 10 sections to the Fifty-ninth Congress bills representing only a division of former sections for clearness of reference, but the facts that the Currier bill retains House sections 7 and 8 of last year, while the Barchfeld, Kittredge, and Smoot bills retain the single Senate section 8, and that the Currier and Smoot bills omit the "separate estate" provision of section 34 of the Fifty-ninth Congress bills, while the Barchfeld and Kittredge bills retain this
as section 44, make the section numbering except in the first six and the latter sections different in the several bills.
Be it enacted by the Senate and House of Representatives of the United States of America in Congress assembled.
SECTIONS 1-3: NATURE OF COPYRIGHT.
SEC. 1. That the copyright secured by this act shall include the exclusive right:
(a) To print, reprint, publish, copy and vend the copyrighted work;
(b) To translate the copyrighted work into other languages or dialects or make any other version thereof if it be a literary work, to dramatize it if it be a nondramatic work, to convert it into a novel or other nondramatic work if it be a drama, to arrange or adapt it if it be a musical work, to complete, execute and finish it if it be a model or design for a work of art, to vary or adapt it if it be a work of art:
(c) To deliver or authorize the delivery of the copyrighted work in public for profit if it be a lecture, sermon, address or similar production;
(d) To perform or represent the copyrighted work publicly if it be a drama;
(e) To perform the copyrighted work publicly for profit if it be a musical composition on which such right of public performance for profit has been reserved as provided in section fifteen of this act.
SEC. 2. That nothing in this act shall be construed to annul or limit the right of the author or proprietor of an unpublished work, at common law or in equity, to prevent the copying, publication, or use of such unpublished work without his consent and to obtain damages therefor.
SEC. 3. That the copyright provided by this act shall protect all the copyrightable component parts of the work copyrighted, and all matter therein in which copyright is already subsisting, but without extending the duration or scope of such copyright. The copyright upon composite works or periodicals shall give to the proprietor thereof all the rights in respect thereto which he would have if each part were individually copyrighted under this act.
SECTIONS 4-8: SUBJECT-MATTER OF
SEC. 4. That the works for which copyright may be secured under this act shall include all the works of an author.
SEC. 1 (b) Currier bill adds "Provided. That the words to arrange or adapt it if it be a musical work' shall not, for the purpose of this act, be deemed to include perforated rolls used for playing musical instruments, or records used for the reproduction of sound waves, or the matrices or other appliances by which such rolls or records are made."
(b) Smoot bill adds: “Provided, That the words to arrange or adapt it if it be a musical work' shall not, for the purpose of this act, be deemed to include the exclusive right to reproduce, by means of or to manufacture perforated rolls used for playing musical instruments, or records used for the reproduction of sound waves, or the matrices or other appliances by which such rolls or records are made."
These provisos are rendered unnecessary by the decision of the Supreme Court, and would be opposed by authors as turning a tacit exception into an explicit privilege.
SEC. 1 (c) Kittredge bill retains the form of the Senate bill of the 59th Congress: "and for the purpose of public performance for profit, and, for the purposes set forth in sub-section (a) hereof, to make any arrangement or setting of it or of the melody of it in any system of notation or any form of record in which the thought of an author may be recorded and from which it may be read or reproduced."
(c) Barchfeld bill includes a similar addition, replacing second "and" by or and reading "in any system or notation, or to make any form of record thereof," etc.
SEC. 4. Kittredge and Barchfeld bills, retaining the form of the Senate bill of the 59th Congress. add: "Whenever the words works of an author'
(k) Prints and pictorial illustrations;
Provided, nevertheless, That the above specifications shall not be held to limit the subject-matter of copyright as defined in section four of this act, nor shall any error in classification invalidate or impair the copyright
protection secured under this act.
SEC. 6. That compilations or abridgments, adaptations, arrangements, dramatizations, translations, or other versions of works in the public domain, or of copyrighted works when produced with the consent of the proprietor of the copyright in such works, or works republished with new matter, shall be regarded as new works subject to copyright under the provisions of this act, but no such copyright shall affect the force or validity of any subsisting copyright upon the matter employed or any part thereof or be construed to imply an exclusive right to such use of the original works or to secure or extend copyright in such original works.
SEC. 7. That the publication or republication by the Government, either separately or in a public document, of any material in which copyright is subsisting shall not be taken to cause any abridgment or annulment of the copy. right or to authorize any use or appropriation of such copyright material without the consent of the copyright proprietor.
SEC. 8. That no copyright shall subsist in the original text of a work by any author not a citizen of the United States first published without the limits of the United States prior to July first, eighteen hundred and ninety-one; or in the original text of any work which has fallen into the public domain.
appear in this act they shall be construed as having the same meanings as writings, including in the term 'writings' all forms of record in which the thought of an author may be recorded and from which it may be read or reproduced."
The Kittredge-Barchfeld provisions in Secs. 1 (c) and 4 present the musical authors' case and are strongly urged by the Authors' League and all friends of copyright as vitally necessary to secure to authors of musical writings the "exclusive benefit" provided for in the Constitution and covering the protection indicated in the opinions of the Circuit and Supreme Court justices as a proper subject for Congressional action. To promote the passage of the general bill, the Authors' League is prepared to accede to the separate presentation of these provisions as a supplementary measure.
SEC. 4. All the 60th Congress bills omit as unnecessary and undesirable the words "literary, artistic, musical, and dramatic" before "works of an
author," included in the Senate form of the 59th Congress bill.
SEC. 5 (a). All the 60th Congress bills also omit the words "and new matter contained in new editions; but not including works specified in other subsections hereunder," as fully covered in Sec. 6.
SECS. 7 and 8 are retained in the Currier bill as in the 59th Congress House bills, while the Barchfeld, Kittredge and Smoot bills condense the two sections as follows into one, as in the previous Senate form:
"SEC. 7. That no copyright shall subsist:
(a) In any publication of the United States Government or any reprint, in whole or in part, thereof: Provided, however, That the publication or republication by the Government, either separately or in a public document, of any material in which copyright is subsisting shall not be taken to cause any abridgment or annulment of the copyright or to authorize any use or appropriation of such copyright mate
SECTION 9: WHO MAY OBTAIN COPYRIGHT.
SEC. 9. That the author or proprietor of any work made the subject of copyright by this act, or his executors, administrators, or assigns, shall have copyright for such work under the conditions and for the terms specified in this act: Provided, however, That the copyright secured by this act shall extend to the work of an author or proprietor who is a citizen or subject of a foreign state or nation, only:
(a) When such foreign author or proprietor shall reside within the United States at the time of the first publication of his work, or shall first or contemporaneously with its first publication in a foreign country publish his work within the limits of the United States; or
(b) When the foreign state or nation of which such author or proprietor is a citizen or subject grants, either by treaty, convention, agreement, or law, to citizens of the United States the benefit of copyright on substantially the same basis as to its own citizens, or copyright protection substantially equal to the protection secured to such foreign author under this act or by treaty; or when such foreign state or nation is a party to an international agreement which provides for reciprocity in the granting of copyright, by the terms of which agreement the United States may at its pleasure become a party thereto.
The existence of the reciprocal conditions aforesaid shall be determined by the President of the United States, by proclamation made from time to time, as the purpose of this act may require.
SECTIONS 10-23: How TO SECURE COPYRIGHT.
SEC. 10. That any person entitled thereto by this act may secure copyright for his work by publication thereof in the United States with the notice of copyright required by this act; and
such notice shall be affixed to each copy thereof published or offered for sale in the United States by authority of the copyright proprietor, except in the case of books seeking ad interim protection under section sixteen of this act. [In the case of a work of art or a plastic work or drawing, such notice shall be affixed to the original also before publication thereof within the United States.]
SEC. 11. That such person may obtain registration of his claim to copyright by complying with the provisions of this act, and upon such compliance the Register of Copyrights shall issue to him the certificate provided for in section fifty-eight of this act.
SEC. 12. That registration may also be had of the works of an author of which copies are not reproduced for sale by the deposit, with claim of copyright, of the title and one complete copy of such work, if it be a lecture or similar production or a dramatic or musical composition; of a photographic print, if the work be a photograph; or of a photograph or other identifying reproduction thereof, if it be a work of art, or a plastic work or drawing; [the notice of copyright in these latter cases being affixed to the original before publication, as required by section ten of this act.] But the privilege of registration secured hereunder shall not exempt the copyright proprietor from the deposits of copies under section twelve of this act where the work is later reproduced in copies for sale.
SEC. 13. That after copyright has been secured by publication of the work in the United States with the notice of copyright as provided in section ten of this act, there shall be deposited in the Copyright Office or in the mail addressed to the Register of Copyrights, Washington, District of Columbia, two complete copies of the best edition thereof then published, which copies, if the book be a book or periodical, shall have been produced in accordance with the manufacturing provisions specified in section sixteen of this act; or if such work be a contribution to a periodical, for which contribution special registration is requested, one copy of the issue or issues containing such contribution; or if the work is not reproduced in copies for sale, there shall be deposited the copy, print, photograph or other identifying reproduction provided by section twelve of this act, such copies or copy, print, photograph or other reproduction to be accompanied in each case by a claim of copyright. No action or proceeding shall be maintained for infringe
the Supreme Court in the Werckmeister case, is advocated by the Authors' League in the interest of artists, as in conformity with the best practice in other copyright systems-and the omission is acceptable to the print publishers.
SEC. 12. See section 10 as to bracketed words.
SEC. 13. Kittredge bill omits the words "in the United States" after the words "publication of the work," and adds the word “promptly" before "deposited."