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Copyright Law

: The Patry Treatise Blog

The Patry Treatise Blog

By William Patry

In conjunction with the release today of my new treatise, I have started this blog as a forum for people to post comments on the treatise. As with The Patry Copyright Blog, you may post anonymously. The purpose of this blog is to begin to break down the one-way nature of legal treatises. I am interested in dialogue, and in improving my own understanding. Usually, one person gets the ball rolling, and that?s how I regard the treatise: it was a way for me to organize and discipline my thoughts. I have yet to have the experience of reading something I wrote (even the day before) and believe it to be perfect. Usually, I cringe. That?s the principal reason I insisted on having the treatise in looseleaf and with twice a year updates.

I am interested in hearing about things people think work: I operate under the assumption that everything is up for revision, but I would hate to change something people find useful. I am also very interested in hearing about things that don?t work so I can change them. This vast category includes readings of cases or statutes, organization, tone (I have an unfortunate tendency to write with too many adjectives or adverbs and to editorialize), and anything else you object to. It can include things you think should have been discussed but weren?t, or were discussed in far too brief or dismissive a way. I will appreciate proof reading errors: I wrote and researched 100% of the treatise, typed most of it, and was the principal proof-reader. The book went through two different word processing programs, multiple versions of those programs, plus having to optically scan numerous chapters and then clean them up word-by-word, a process that took me many months. I have found errors since the book went to press and they will be corrected. (My favorite so far is one that refers to an "obscurity" defense rather than, as it should be an "obscenity" defense). If rather than posting such discoveries, you would be more comfortable emailing me (or simply wish to spare me public humiliation), you can email me at:

On the substantive side of things, I already have files chock full of things I will add in to the first supplement (July), and I will use this blog both to update you on things I will be including as well as things I am thinking of adding, and issues I need to work through in order to figure them out. One such area in 17 USC 512. I have in the past been very hostile to the DMCA amendments, for a variety of reasons, both substantive and process-oriented. I still loathe the chapter 12 additions, and think Section 512 is in need of a translation and redrafting into English. For those reasons, I have very little on those provisions in the book as just published, but will have a substantial discussion in the first update and have been working on that section for some time.
Conversely, there are other issues where readers may think I have too much discussion; chapter 17 may be such an example. Dealing with personal jurisdiction and venue, it has an extensive discussion of general law. The principal reason for the length is that there is little unique to copyright disputes about these issues, yet they are front and center in almost every copyright infringement action; to ignore those issues is to ignore the staple of copyright litigation. I will though be interested if these sections are useful. At the same, not every section will be of interest to everyone: there is material of a jurisprudential nature that practicing lawyers will have no interest in, and vice versa, so please don?t dismiss out of hand long discussions that don?t interest you because they may of interest to others. What I hope is that what is of interest to readers is correct and useful. So please, let me know, anonymously or otherwise, in this blog or by email.

Unlike the other blog, I won?t be posting every weekday although I will check for comments and will promptly respond.

Full post as published by The Patry Treatise Blog on January 10, 2007 (boomark / email).

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