Part II of this comment will explain the history of the first sale doctrine, observe how Congress has modified the doctrine over time, and examine how the courts have interpreted the doctrine in light of various technological innovations. Part III will address the problems associated with digital media and examine the concerns of both copyright owners and consumers surrounding a digital first sale doctrine. Part IV will discuss the recent federal district court case, Capitol Records, LLC v. ReDigi Inc., which dealt with the issue of the first sale doctrine’s applicability to digital media, and explain why the court missed a prime opportunity to improve copyright law and ensure its compatibility with current technology. Part V offers a concise Congressional solution to expressly allow the first sale doctrine’s application to digital media, paired with some practical restrictions, to effectively balance the interests of both copyright owners and consumers. Part VI concludes that the first sale doctrine is currently broad enough to incorporate digital media in order to enhance consumer rights in the modern age. However, as the courts have declined to take up the issue, Congress can create an expressly balanced “digital first sale doctrine,” implementing subtle solutions to curtail the concerns of copyright owners.
Dobson, Monica L.
"ReDigi and the Resale of Digital Media: The Courts Reject a Digital First Sale Doctrine and Sustain the Imbalance Between Copyright Owners and Consumers,"
Akron Intellectual Property Journal: Vol. 7
, Article 3.
Available at: https://ideaexchange.uakron.edu/akronintellectualproperty/vol7/iss2/3