Publishers Welcome 2018 USTR Special 301 Report Addressing Copyright Protection and Enforcement Issues

The Association of American Publishers (AAP) welcomes today’s release of the 2018 Special 301 Report by the Office of the U.S. Trade Representative (USTR). The Report highlights key markets in which publishers have significant copyright concerns and face market-access barriers. The Report is a critical tool for policymakers to identify barriers that impede the ability of U.S. copyright owners to compete in foreign markets.

The Report notes that the U.S. “remains deeply troubled by the ambiguous education-related exception to copyright that has significantly damaged the market for educational publishers and authors.” This overbroad fair dealing exception for education has led to systematic, uncompensated copying and confusing guidance to courts. Reform is necessary to instill balance into the law and ensure that authors and publishers are appropriately compensated for the use of their works.

“The work of USTR and its interagency partners to highlight the concerns of U.S. rights holders through the Special 301 process is most appreciated. The need for reform in Canada remains a high priority, and the publishing industry is hopeful that the Canadian government will heed its partner government’s call for a robust and expeditious review process,” said Lui Simpson, Vice President for Global Policy at AAP.

The Report addresses both challenges and market opportunities for publishers with the continuing growth of digital formats and mobile marketplaces.

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