Victory for Unlocking 3D Printers by @mweinberg2D

Adafruit 2018 0847

Victory for Unlocking 3D Printers – MichaelWeinberg.org.

Late last week the United States Copyright Office and the Librarian of Congress handed a significant victory to 3D printer users who want to use 3D printing materials of their choice. The Copyright Office and Librarian published a rule that made it clear that using materials from a someone besides the company that manufactures the 3D printer does not violate copyright law. This is a win for anyone who wants to experiment with 3D printers, and for the concept of limitations to the scope of copyright law more generally.

The rule – technically an exception to the prohibition on circumventing technical protection measures established in 17 USC 1201 (a) – will be in effect for the next three years (I’ll refer to the thing that was published interchangeably as a rule and exception in this post). In three years the Copyright Office will review all of the exceptions granted during this round to determine if they should be renewed, modified, or eliminated. That means that you should please let me know if you make use of this exception, because we’ll have to do all of this again in three years.

Read more.


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1 Comment

  1. Note that there have been some changes to the renewal process. See section D, Streamlined Renewal Process:

    https://s3.amazonaws.com/public-inspection.federalregister.gov/2018-23241.pdf

    Some readings of this suggest that we can expect automatic renewal of exemptions if there are no significant changes to the conditions and no new contrary evidence filed.

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