Illustration professor at SCAD-Atlanta
If you are going to school to become a visual artist, illustrator, photographer, sequential artist, or any other commercial art career where you sell reproduction rights to your work, this affects you. Imagine if every drawing, painting or photograph that you created had to be registered to a private digital database, with a fee attached to each registration. There is a revised bill from 2006 that has reared its ugly head again in Congress. It’s dubbed the Orphan Works Act of 2008. If this is passed in its current state, registering your work is exactly what you and I will have to do to protect ourselves from someone infringing on our work. This is a radical departure from international copyright law and normal business practice. Under this bill, even if you have already registered your work with the US Copyright Office, you will have to register it again with one or more private image databases at additional costs. As an artist this would be a time-intensive and costly burden. You can choose to not register and have the potential for your work to be infringed upon more so than it is now. This bill makes it easier for others to steal your work and harder than ever before for individual artists to protect their work.
Two minutes is all it takes to write Congress and fight for your copyrights. Get online and go to this site: http://capwiz.com/illustratorspartnership/home/