IDA's Doc U: A Guide to Fair Use and the DMCA for Doc Filmmakers

Last year, an IDA-led coalition of filmmakers achieved a historic exemption in the Digital Millenium Copyright Act (DMCA) that allows documentary filmmakers to “crack” digital encryption on certain types of media (including “ripping” DVDs). What does it mean to claim fair use and how do you do it? What does the DMCA prohibit you from doing, and what does it allow you to do? What are the parameters for knowing when your use of copyrighted content is allowable, and covered by this exemption? In this special edition of Doc U, we’ll explore how to employ fair use responsibly, and how to safely navigate the DMCA exemption for doc filmmakers. Led by Professor Jack Lerner (IDA Board Member, Director of the USC Intellectual Property and Technology Law Clinic at the USC Gould School of Law), the seminar includes an overview of fair use by Dean Cheley (of law firm Donaldson + Callif) — and an in-depth “How To” guide to understanding and applying the DMCA exemption, presented by Law Clinic participants Garrett Lee and Katharine Trendacosta.