First-Sale Doctrine

From the website of the Stanford Law Review, written by Clark Asay, on the recent ruling by the U.S. Supreme Court on the subject of “first-sale doctrine” for second-hand books printed and lawfully purchased abroad, and re-imported into the USA.

The Court held six to three that the first-sale doctrine allows importing physical books, lawfully made and acquired abroad, into the United States for resale without violating a copyright owner’s distribution right.

The extension of the solution to ebooks is doubtful.

For ebooks purchased from the online services of the usual suspects, is there a first sale or are we all licensees?

The issue is hot, let’s hear from you!



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