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COPYRIGHT LAW REVISION

THURSDAY, SEPTEMBER 18, 1975

HOUSE OF REPRESENTATIVES,
SUBCOMMITTEE ON COURTS, CIVIL LIBERTIES,

AND THE ADMINISTRATION OF JUSTICE
OF THE COMMITTEE ON THE JUDICIARY,

Washington, D.C. The subcommittee met, pursuant to recess, at 10:15 a.m., in room 2226, Rayburn House Office Building, the Honorable Robert W. Kastenmeier (chairman of the subcommittee) presiding.

Present: Representatives Kastenmeier, Drinan, Pattison, Railsback, and Wiggins.

Also present: Herbert Fuchs, counsel; and Thomas E. Mooney, associate counsel.

Mr. KASTENMEIER. The committee will come to order. This morning's hearing on copyright law revision relates to a number of miscellaneous issues. First, we shall receive testimony from four witnesses who wish to be heard on the so-called manufacturing clause, section 601 of H.R. 2223. We will examine these witnesses when they have all testified.

At earlier hearings, the subcommittee received testimony of governmental witnesses, notably from the State Department, on this particular issue.

Second, we are scheduled to hear testimony on H.R. 4965, introduced by Mr. Won Pat, Delegate from Guam, that would provide a nonsimultaneous recording right for transmission on cable systems in noncontiguous areas.

Third, we will hear testimony on ephemeral recording right provisions with respect to music of a religious nature, section 112(c) of the bill.

Lastly, we will receive further testimony on public radio and the handicapped.

At this time, then, the Chair is very pleased to welcome our first witness, Mr. 0. R. Strackbein, representing International Allied Printing Trades Association. Mr. Strackbein, vou testified before the subcommittee just over 10 years ago in August of 1965. We welcome

you back.

TESTIMONY OF 0. R. STRACKBEIN, REPRESENTING INTERNA

TIONAL ALLIED PRINTING TRADES ASSOCIATION

Mr. STRACKBEIN. Thank yon. It seems quite a while from when I testified on this subject the last time. I am happy to be back. I hope this time that we will go through.

I appear here as the legislative representative of the International Allied Printing Trades Association to testify on H.R. 2223, a bill for the general revision of the copyright laws.

The International Allied Printing Trades Association is composed of the combined printing trades unions affiliated with the American Federation of Labor and Congress of Industrial Organizations.

These unions are:
The International Typographical Union;
The Graphic Arts International Union; and
The International Printing and Graphic Communications Union.

When I testified previously, there were, I think, five or six of these international unions, but there have been some mergers since that time, and the number is now down to three, but the membership remains at upwards of 575,000. So, I will skip that part and go on to the substance of their position.

We believe that the manufacturing clause, which has been in existence in somewhat of a modified form since 1909, should be retained as it stands in H.R. 2223, unmodified. The original purpose of the clause itself remains unchanged. Numerous assaults have been made against it over the years, but it has stood the test of time. It is not necessary here to spell out the meaning of the clause other than to say that with a reasonable exception all books of nondramatic literary material, authored by an American national, printed in the English language must, in order to enjoy copyright protection in this country, be manufactured in this country. The exception is that of 2,000 copies to permit testing the market.

The reason for this requirement is the maintenance of employment in this country at levels of compensation and under working conditions that are in keeping with the standard of living achieved here and maintained over the years.

Until recently foreign wage levels have remained at levels far below those prevailing in this country, including the printing trades.

While during the recent worldwide inflationary period foreign wages have risen, the narrowing of the wage differential may be temporary. It is still quite wide in any event, and imports of printed matter by this country have increased from $97.2 million in 1966 to $271.3 million in 1974. This represents a near tripling of imports.

Some of this sharp increase may be attributable to the removal of our duty on books under the Florence Convention which was negotiated under the auspices of UNESCO, the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization, and ratified by the Senate. It took effect in 1966.

Opposition to the manufacturing clause is often based on the simplistic objection that it is protectionist. However, a copyright is itself protectionist in the sense that it bestows a monopoly on the author or his publisher. That purpose is contained in section 8, article I, of our Constitution. The purpose is to promote the progress of science and useful arts, by securing for limited times to authors and inventors the exclusive right to their respective writings and discoveries.

The Universal Copyright Convention extends copyright privileges in this country to foreign publishers but does not preclude this country's setting forth the conditions under which the monopoly privilege may be enjoyed. Foreign authors are not excluded from the enjoyment of copyright in this country. They must merely, under the clause, conform to the conditions that will place them on the same plane as American authors.

The importation of books, free of duty, has increased from $48 million in 1967 to $125 million in 1974. They are included in the more general classification of printed matter and represent nearly a half of the total as recited in a preceding paragraph.

With importation free of duty, the principal inducement to manufacture books abroad, as indicated above, lies in generally lower wages prevailing in many foreign countries. Of principal concern to the printing trades in this country are possible sources of cheap labor such as still prevail in the Far East and across our borders in Mexico.

Wage comparisons admittedly leave much to be desired if the purpose is to determine comparative costs of production. Rates of wages must be translated through exchange rates, and when these fluctuate as they have in recent times, we encounter considerable difficulty in arriving at satisfactory comparisons. Moreover, productivity, which is to say output per man-hour, varies considerably from country to country. The so-called fringe benefits may also vary from country to country.

Yet, when all this has been said, two other considerations will contribute to the relevance of comparative wage rates. In recent years, productivity in other industrial countries has advanced quite sharply. The United States no longer enjoys the great lead in this respect that was formerly her advantage. The higher wages here went hand in hand in many instances with higher output per man-hour. Modern technology, including that of the printing industry, is now quite widely diffused throughout the world, at least in many countries.

Second, the wage differentials between the American printing industry and the foreign are, in some instances, still very wide, especially so far as countries of the Far East are concerned, as well as Latin America.

Now I have a listing here, Mr. Chairman, of comparative wage rates and

Mr. KASTENMEIER. Without objection, your entire statement with the detailed listings will be accepted for the record.

Mr. STRACKBEIN. I think it is probably enough, without running through these lists, to say that, so far as the Far Eastern countries are concerned, like Japan, Korea, Hong Kong, et cetera, which are most likely to export books to this country and where publishers have the books printed, their monthly rates look more like our weekly rates, or even less. The same is true of Mexico.

Now, in the European countries, such as Britain, Belgium, France, West Germany, and so on, the rates are considerably higher or markedly higher than they are in the Far Eastern and Latin American countries, but yet those rates are also still lingering quite distinctly below those prevailing in this country.

In Britain, for example, turning to page 7 of my statement, the wage for the printing trade was paid at the level of $62 for typographers and lithographers and gravure-printers in 1974. That is, of course, per week. But, in this country, the American rate for bookbinders was $150, while the rate for typographers was $212 and for gravure-printers,

$269. So you will see a considerable gap between the British rate in the printing trades and those prevailing in this country.

West Germany's were higher than in Britain and higher than those in France. Norway and Sweden and Switzerland have distinctly higher rates than these other countries.

Mr. KASTENMEIER. Thank you. We have a system of allocating time to witnesses, and you have exceeded your 5 minutes' time, unless Mr. Van Arkel wishes to concede all of his time. He, too, has 5 minutes.

Mr. VAN ARKEL. Why don't I give him 3 minutes and

Mr. KASTENMEIER. Well, I think he has already consumed 3 minutes of your time.

Mr. STRACKBEIN. You mean I have consumed that much of his time beyond my own?

Mr. KASTENMEIER. Yes.

Mr. STRACKBEIN. Well, in that case, I have just about completed the whole statement, by picking up these rates. Switzerland does have the highest rate amongst the countries that were tabulated, but Switzerland is not a country that I think will give us trouble in this field.

Mr. KASTENMEIER. Well, thank you.
[The prepared statement of O. R. Strackbein follows:]

STATEMENT OF O. R. STRACKBEIN, LEGISLATIVE REPRESENTATIVE, INTERNATIONAL

ALLIED PRINTING TRADES ASSOCIATION I appear before you as the Legislative Representative of the International Allied Printing Trades Association to testify on H.R. 2223, a bill for the general revision of the copyright laws.

The International Allied Printing Trades Association is composed of the combined printing trades unions affiliated with the American Federation of Labor and Congress of Industrial Organizations.

These Unions are: The International Typographical Union; The Graphic Arts International Union; The International Printing and Graphic Communications Union.

The Graphic Arts International Union resulted from a merger of the Book. binders, Photoengravers and the Lithographers Unions.

The International Printing and Graphic Communications Union formerly consisted of the Printing Pressmen and the Stereotypers and Electrotypers Unions.

The combined membership of these unions is upward of 375,000.

Since the last general copyright law revision in 1909 these unions have supported, first the inclusion and, second, the retention of the so-called Manufacturing Clause of our Copyright law. In the sixty-six years since that time the Clause (embodied in Chapter 6, Section 601 of H.R. 2223) has been modified only marginally.

We believe that it should be retained as it stands in H.R. 2223, unmodified. The original purpose of the Clause itself remains unchanged. Numerous assaults have been made against it over the years but it has stood the test of time. It is not necessary here to spell out the meaning of the Clause other than to say that with a reasonable exception all books of nondramatic literary material, authored by an American national, printed in the English language must, in order to enjoy copyright protection in this country, be manufactured in this country. The exception is that of 2,000 copies to permit testing the market.

The reason for this requirement is the maintenance of employment in this country at levels of compensation and under working conditions that are in keeping with the standard of living achieved here and maintained over the years.

Until recently foreign wage levels have remained at levels far below those prevailing in this country, including the printing trades.

While during the recent world-wide inflationary period foreign wages have risen, the narrowing of the wage differential may be temporary. It is still quite wide. In any event imports of printed matter by this country has increased from $97.2 million in 1966 to $271.3 million in 1974. This represents a near tripling of imports.

Some of this sharp increase may be attributable to the removal of our duty on books under the Florence Convention which was negotiated under the auspices of UNESCO (United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization) and ratified by the Senate. It took effect in 1966.

Opposition to the Manufacturing Clause is often based on the simplistic objection that it is protectionist. However, a copyright is itself protectionist in the sense that it bestows a monopoly on the author. That purpose is contained in Section 8, Article I of our Constitution. The purpose is “to promote the Progress of Science and useful Arts, by securing for limited times to Authors and Inventors the exclusive Right to their respective Writings and Discoveries”.

The Universal Copyright Convention extends copyright privileges in this country to foreign publishers but does not preclude this country's setting forth the conditions under which the monopoly privilege may be enjoyed. Foreign authors are not excluded from the enjoyment of copyright in this country. They must merely conform to the conditions that will place them on the same plane as American authors.

The importation of books (free of duty) has increased from $48,000,000 in 1967 to $125,000,000 in 1974. They are included in the more general classification of printed matter and represent nearly a half of the total as recited in a preceding paragraph.

With importation free of duty the principal inducement to manufacture books abroad, as indicated above, lies in generally lower wages prevailing in many foreign countries. Of principal concern to the printing trades in this country are possible sources of cheap labor such as still prevail in the Far East and across our borders in Mexico.

Wage comparisons admittedly leave much to be desired if the purpose is to determine comparative costs of production. Rates of wages must be translated through exchange rates, and when these fluctuate as they have in recent times we encounter considerable difficulty in arriving at satisfactory comparisons. Moreover productivity, which is to say, output per man-hour, varies considerably from country to country. The so-called fringe benefits may also vary from country to country.

Yet when all this has been said two other considerations will contribute to the relevance of comparative wage rates. In recent years productivity in other industrial countries has advanced quite sharply. The United States no longer enjoys the great lead in this respect that was formerly her advantage. The higher wages here went hand-in-hand in many instances with higher output per man-hour. Modern technology, including that of the printing industry, is now quite widely diffused.

Secondly, the wage differentials between the American printing industry and the foreign are in some instances still very wide, especially so far as countries of the Far East are concerned, as well as Latin America.

In the United States the average gross earnings of production or nonsupervisory workers in the manufacture of books, was $161.93 per week in 1973, or $4.11 per hour. (Bureau of Labor Statistics, U.S. Department of Labor, March 1974). There were, of course, higher rates as well as lower ones. The average pay of compositors hand or machine, ranged from $5.52 per hour in Atlanta to $8.10 in New York in October 1973. Bookbinders (machine sewing) in the same centers received an average pay from $4.15 to $4.53 in Atlanta and San Francisco, respectively, for females ; from $5.78 to $7.39 in New York for males. Press operators ranged from $5.52 to $8.10 in Atlanta and New York, respectively.

In Mexico machine or hand compositors (adults) earned 93.6 cents per hour in 1973. Press operators, rotary or flat, received an average of $1.07 per hour. Unskilled workers earned only 66.6 cents per hour. (Source: Bulletin of Labour Statistics, 2nd quarter, 1974. International Labor Office, Geneva).

Here we see a strong contrast with the earnings in this country. The differential is over 4 to 1 in the United States in relation to the level in Mexico.

In Hong Kong for hand compositors the hourly wages were 66 cents per hour in 1973 while machine compositors received an average of 91 cents. Bookbinders received from 49 cents to 60 cents depending on whether they were female or male. Press operators received an average of 71 cents. (Source: same as for Mexican wages).

Taiwanese earnings are given on a monthly basis. In 1973 the monthly earnings in Taiwan in the printing industry ranged upward from $79.96 in May to $89.60 in November (the conversion from the Taiwanese dollar to the U.S. dollar made at rate of 38.33 to 1 U.S. dollar). Typesetting and bookbinding rates ranged from $60.18 in April to $64.17 in December 1973.

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