Brief of 25 Intellectual Property Law Professors in Kirtsaeng v. John Wiley & Sons
I’m one of the signatories of an amicus brief filed with the US Supreme Court in Kirtsaeng v. John Wiley & Sons. The case involves parallel importation of books and whether the first sale doctrine applies to copies that were made (with permission of the copyright holder) outside the US. Here’s the abstract of the brief:
The first sale doctrine has long provided that legitimate owners of non-infringing copies of copyrighted works may use and sell their copies as they see fit — just as all property owners may generally use and alienate their property. In keeping with that rationale, the doctrine traditionally applied to all works made and sold by the copyright holder or its licensee, regardless of the place of the manufacture or the first sale of a particular copy. The Second Circuit’s contrary holding — that 17 U.S.C. § 109(a) categorically bars application of the first sale doctrine to foreign-made goods — runs contrary to the statutory context in which § 109(a) appears, the common-law backdrop against which Congress legislated, and analogous principles of patent law as well.
I also have a recent paper on the first sale doctrine, which is available here.