Text: H.R.2517 — 108th Congress (2003-2004)All Bill Information (Except Text)

There is one version of the bill.

Text available as:

Shown Here:
Introduced in House (06/19/2003)


Formatting necessary for an accurate reading of this legislative text may be shown by tags (e.g., <DELETED> or <BOLD>) or may be missing from this TXT display. For complete and accurate display of this text, see the PDF or HTML/XML.




[Congressional Bills 108th Congress]
[From the U.S. Government Printing Office]
[H.R. 2517 Introduced in House (IH)]






108th CONGRESS
  1st Session
                                H. R. 2517

  To enhance criminal enforcement of the copyright laws, educate the 
  public about the application of copyright law to the Internet, and 
     clarify the authority to seize unauthorized copyrighted works.


_______________________________________________________________________


                    IN THE HOUSE OF REPRESENTATIVES

                             June 19, 2003

     Mr. Smith of Texas (for himself, Mr. Berman, and Mr. Conyers) 
 introduced the following bill; which was referred to the Committee on 
                             the Judiciary

_______________________________________________________________________

                                 A BILL


 
  To enhance criminal enforcement of the copyright laws, educate the 
  public about the application of copyright law to the Internet, and 
     clarify the authority to seize unauthorized copyrighted works.

    Be it enacted by the Senate and House of Representatives of the 
United States of America in Congress assembled,

SECTION 1. SHORT TITLE.

    This Act may be cited as the ``Piracy Deterrence and Education Act 
of 2003''.

SEC. 2. FINDINGS.

    The Congress finds as follows:
            (1) The Internet, while changing the way our society 
        communicates, has also changed the nature of many crimes, 
        including the theft of intellectual property.
            (2) Trafficking in copyrighted works through increasingly 
        sophisticated electronic means, including peer-to-peer file 
        trading networks, Internet chat rooms, and newsgroups, 
        threatens lost jobs, lost income for creators, lower tax 
        revenue, and higher prices for honest purchasers.
            (3) The most popular peer-to-peer file trading software 
        programs have been downloaded by computer users over 
        200,000,000 times. At any one time there are over 3,000,000 
        users simultaneously using just one of these services. Each 
        month, on average, over 2,300,000,000 digital-media files are 
        transferred among users of peer-to-peer systems.
            (4) Many computer users either do not know that copyright 
        laws apply to Internet activity or simply believe that they 
        will not be caught or prosecuted for their conduct.
            (5) In addition, many of the computer users drawn to the 
        convenience of peer-to-peer systems do not realize that these 
        systems pose serious security and privacy threats to their 
        personal computers or company networks. Recent studies reveal 
        that the majority of the users of these systems are unable to 
        tell what files they are sharing and sometimes incorrectly 
        assume they were not sharing any files when in fact they were 
        sharing all files on their hard drive.
            (6) The security and privacy threats posed by peer-to-peer 
        networks extend beyond users inadvertently enabling a hacker to 
        access files. Millions of copies of one of the most popular 
        peer-to-peer networks contain software that could allow an 
        independent company to take over portions of users' computers 
        and Internet connections and has the capacity to keep track of 
        users' online habits.
            (7) In light of these considerations, it is important that 
        Federal law enforcement agencies actively pursue criminals who 
        steal the copyrighted works of others, and prevent such 
        activity through enforcement and awareness. It is also 
        important that the public be educated about the security and 
        privacy risks associated with being connected to an 
        unauthorized peer-to-peer network.
            (8) In addition, the Bureau of Customs and Border 
        Protection of the Department of Homeland Security has the 
        authority to act against infringements of copyrighted works, 
        including those works protected under the Berne Convention and 
        the Agreement on Trade Related Aspects of Intellectual Property 
        of the World Trade Organization. Under United States law, 
        merchandise can be seized by or forfeited to the Bureau of 
        Customs and Border Protection if ``it is merchandise or 
        packaging in which copyright, trademark, or trade name 
        protection violations are involved'' (section 596(c)(2)(C) of 
        the Tariff Act of 1930 (19 U.S.C. 1595a(c)(2)(C)).
            (9) Though the regulations of the Bureau of Customs and 
        Border Protection (section 133.31 of title 19, Code of Federal 
        Regulations) provide that registered copyrighted works may be 
        recorded with the Bureau for ``import protection,'' recordation 
        is not explicitly required before infringing merchandise can be 
        seized or forfeited. Notwithstanding present legal authority, 
        there have been concerns raised about the authority of the 
        Bureau of Customs and Border Protection to seize infringing 
        copyrighted materials that have neither been registered with 
        the United States Copyright Office or recorded with the Bureau.
            (10) Neither United States nor foreign works require 
        registration with the Copyright Office for protection of the 
        copyright in those works. United States works require 
        registration only before an action for infringement is brought 
        under title 17, United States Code. A foreign work need not be 
        registered to bring such an action for infringement, and none 
        of the rights contained in title 17, United States Code, 
        including the right to control distribution in section 106 of 
        that title or importation under section 602 of that title, are 
        contingent upon registration. In accordance with the 
        international obligations of the United States barring the use 
        of formalities, United States law gives foreign copyright 
        owners direct access to United States courts and procedures 
        without resort to any registration requirement, and section 603 
        of title 17, United States Code, directs the Secretary of the 
        Treasury and the United States Postal Service to separately or 
        jointly make regulations for the enforcement of the provisions 
        of title 17, United States Code, prohibiting importation.
            (11) Notwithstanding the preceding provisions of this 
        section, the Bureau of Customs and Border Protection has been 
        unclear about its legal authority to seize infringing 
        copyrighted materials that have neither been registered with 
        the Copyright Office nor recorded with the Bureau. To provide 
        clarity, it is necessary to specify the authority of the Bureau 
        of Customs and Border Protection to seize infringing materials 
        protected by the copyright laws, with or without registration 
        or recordation.

SEC. 3. DETERRENCE AND COORDINATION.

    The Director of the Federal Bureau of Investigation shall--
            (1) develop a program to deter members of the public from 
        committing acts of copyright infringement by--
                    (A) offering on the Internet copies of copyrighted 
                works, or
                    (B) making copies of copyrighted works from the 
                Internet,
        without the authorization of the copyright owners; and
            (2) facilitate the sharing among law enforcement agencies, 
        Internet service providers, and copyright owners of information 
        concerning activities described in subparagraphs (A) and (B) of 
        paragraph (1).
The program under paragraph (1) shall include issuing appropriate 
warnings to individuals engaged in an activity described in 
subparagraph (A) or (B) of paragraph (1) that they may be subject to 
criminal prosecution.

SEC. 4. DESIGNATION AND TRAINING OF AGENTS IN COMPUTER HACKING AND 
              INTELLECTUAL PROPERTY UNITS.

    (a) Designation of Agents in CHIPs Units.--The Attorney General 
shall ensure that any unit in the Department of Justice responsible for 
investigating computer hacking or responsible for investigating 
intellectual property crimes is assigned at least one agent to support 
such unit for the purpose of investigating crimes relating to the theft 
of intellectual property.
    (b) Training.--The Attorney General shall ensure that each agent 
assigned under subsection (a) has received training in the 
investigation and enforcement of intellectual property crimes.

SEC. 5. EDUCATION PROGRAM.

    (a) Establishment.--There shall be established within the Office of 
the Associate Attorney General of the United States an Internet Use 
Education Program.
    (b) Purpose.--The purpose of the Internet Use Education Program 
shall be to--
            (1) educate the general public concerning the value of 
        copyrighted works and the effects of the theft of such works on 
        those who create them;
            (2) educate the general public concerning the privacy, 
        security, and other risks of using the Internet to obtain 
        unauthorized copies of copyrighted works;
            (3) coordinate and consult with the Department of Education 
        on compliance by educational institutions with applicable 
        copyright laws involving Internet use; and
            (4) coordinate and consult with the Department of Commerce 
        on compliance by corporations with applicable copyright laws 
        involving Internet use.

SEC. 6. CUSTOMS RECORDATION.

    (a) Registration and Infringement Actions.--Section 411(a) of title 
17, United States Code, is amended by inserting after the first 
sentence the following: ``An action for infringement of the copyright 
in any United States work shall not include any action brought by the 
Government of the United States or by any agency or instrumentality 
thereof.''.
    (b) Infringing Importation.--Section 602(a) of title 17, United 
States Code, is amended by inserting before the period at the end of 
the first sentence the following: ``, regardless of whether that work 
has been registered with the Copyright Office or recorded with the 
Bureau of Customs and Border Protection of the Department of Homeland 
Security''.
    (c) Importation Prohibitions.--Section 603(a) of title 17, United 
States Code, is amended by inserting before the period the following: 
``of copies or phonorecords of a work protected under this title, 
regardless of whether that work has been registered with the Copyright 
Office or recorded with the Bureau of Customs and Border Protection of 
the Department of Homeland Security''.

SEC. 7. INFRINGEMENT WARNING NOTICE.

    The Attorney General shall, within 3 months after the date of the 
enactment of this Act, set forth criteria under which copyright owners 
designated by the Attorney General will be able to use the seal of the 
Federal Bureau of Investigation for deterrent purposes in connection 
with physical and digital copies and phonorecords and digital 
transmission of their works of authorship.
                                 <all>