The Effects of the Digital Millennium Copyright Act of 1998

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The Effects of the Digital Millennium Copyright Act of 1998

The verb copy is defined as “To reproduce an original.” (Webster, 57-58) This idea of copying has been around for hundreds of years. In the current time, laws have had to be written to protect against the idea of copying someone else’s work. There are ways around the copyright laws. “A copy is in violation of a copyright if the original can be “perceived, reproduced, or otherwise communicated by or from the copy, directly or indirectly.” As years go on, copyrights become more and more specific as to what uses and kinds of copying are covered. (Baase, 239)

Copyrights, in general, have been around for well over 200 years. “The first U.S. copyright law was passed in 1790. This copyright only protected books, maps, and charts. The copyright law of 1790 was later revised, covering photography, sound recording and movies.” (Baase, 239) Back then, that was their version of new technology where as today, if that copyright was all we had, no one would have an original of anything and no one would probably make nearly as much profit as they do now with new copyright laws that have been passed to protect the new up to date technology. Some examples of copyrights changing with the new technology come in years following. One of these examples of a copyright being revised is the copyright of 1976 and 1980. These copyright laws were revised to include software. (Baase, 239)

An example of these ever-changing laws is the Digital Millennium Copyright Act of 1998. Under this act, people are prohibited in “making, distributing or using of tools, which are devices, software or services, to circumvent technological copyright protecti...

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...Act of 1998 can be seen as both a positive thing and a burden on some things. The act was generated to protect the originality of work and has successfully done so. To the artists it has helped and to the users of such things as Napster, it has hurt. At any rate, the act is an important one and when used correctly prevents fraud of a different sort.

Works Cited

Baase, Sara. (2003). A Gift of Fire (2nd ed.).Upper Saddle River, NJ: Prentice Hall. 1994). Webster’s Dictionary. Nickel Press.

Lee, J. (2001, July). U.S. Arrests Russian Cryptographer as Copyright Violator. [15 paragraphs]. The New York Times.


Brown, J. (2000, May). Napster throws Metallica a curveball. [8 paragraphs].

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