The American Library Association has announced that copyright attorney Jonathan Band has been awarded the 2017 the L. Ray Patterson Copyright Award. The award recognizes “contributions of an individual or group that pursues and supports the Constitutional purpose of the U.S. copyright law, fair use and the public domain.”
Band, a copyright attorney at policybandwidth and an adjunct professor at Georgetown Law School, has been a longtime advisor and representative for the library community. In 2012, when a number of issues were in play (the GSU e-reserves case, the Google Books Litigation, the library e-book impasse, and the Kirtsaeng case, to name a few) PW did a lengthy feature interview with Band, who helped librarians navigate those choppy waters.
ALA officials note that Band has written public comments, testimony, amicus briefs, and countless statements “supporting balanced copyright,” his amicus brief on behalf of the Library Copyright Alliance was quoted in the landmark Kirstaeng v. Wiley case, before the U.S. Supreme Court.
The award is named for L. Ray Patterson, Pope Brock Professor of Law at the University of Georgia, considered one of the giants in scholarship on copyright law and known across disciplines for his work on the history and nature of copyright.
“Jonathan Band has guided the library community over two decades through the challenges of the copyright legal and legislative battles,” said ALA President James Neal in a statement. “His deep understanding of our community and the needs of our users, in combination with his remarkable knowledge and supportive style, has raised our understanding of copyright and our commitment to balanced interpretations and applications of the law. The 2017 L. Ray Patterson Copyright Award appropriately celebrates Jonathan’s leadership, counsel and dedication.”
The Patterson Award will be presented to Band by ALA President Jim Neal at a reception in Washington, D.C., in October.