U.S. Copyright Office: is it okay if our new website only works with Internet Explorer?

“Signaling a new addition to the list of browser-specific Web sites, the U.S. Copyright Office solicited opinions on a planned Internet Explorer-only zone,” Paul Festa reports for CNET News. “The office, a division of the Library of Congress, invited comments through Aug. 22 on an upcoming Web service for prospective copyright owners that may launch with support for only limited browsers.”

“‘At this point in the process of developing the Copyright Office’s system for online preregistration, it is not entirely clear whether the system will be compatible with Web browsers other than Microsoft Internet Explorer versions 5.1 and higher,’ the office said in its notice. ‘In order to ensure that preregistration can be implemented in a smoothly functioning and timely manner, the office now seeks comments that will assist it in determining whether any eligible parties will be prevented from preregistering a claim due to browser requirements of the preregistration system.'”

“In an interview, an attorney with the office said that the sticking point was Siebel software that guaranteed compatibility with only selected browsers… The Copyright Office said it planned to upgrade to Siebel 7.8, which supports Netscape 7.2, Firefox 1.0.3 and Mozilla 1.7.7, but not in time for the Oct. 24 launch. Neither the Copyright Office nor Siebel said they planned to support other browsers like Opera or Apple Computer’s Safari.”

Full article here.

MacDailyNews Take: Um, no, idiots, it’s not okay. Although it does make perfect sense that the U.S. government would set up a system for creative people like film producers and limit them to the world’s least creative, most derivative browser – while, of course, excluding all of the Macs with their default Safari browsers that are almost certainly on these creatives’ desks and in their backpacks.

The coup de grace is that in order for any taxpayers to object, the U.S. Copyright Office is so antiquated that they require original comments and five copies should be mailed to Copyright GC/ I&R, P.O. Box 70400, Southwest Station, Washington, D.C. 20024-0400. Our only guess if that they couldn’t figure out how to make a simple online comment form work at all (or a copier, for that matter). Perhaps they didn’t want to make an online comment form, so they wouldn’t have to hear what idiots they are from thousands of people that are sick and tired of idiots who design websites for a single browser especially when they are paying for such idiocy with their tax dollars.

These poor idiots will need a slogan. We have a suggestion: “Use the world’s most insecure browser to secure your copyright!”

Oh, look, more ways to contact: David O. Carson, General Counsel, or Charlotte Douglass, Principal Legal Advisor, P.O. Box 70400, Washington, DC 20024-0400, Telephone (202) 707-8380. Fax: (202) 707-8366.

Related MacDailyNews articles:
Survey identifies strong demand for Macintosh and Firefox web conferencing support – August 11, 2005
Using Apple’s Mac OS X 10.4 Tiger’s included fax capabiltes – July 22, 2005
Security report shows Microsoft’s Internet Explorer was unsafe for all but seven days of 2004 – March 22, 2005
Penn State’s IT Services recommends dumping Microsoft Internet Explorer immediately – December 09, 2004
Security expert: Don’t use Microsoft Windows, Office, Outlook, Internet Explorer – December 09, 2004
German Federal Office for Information Security: Internet users should ditch Internet Explorer – September 13, 2004
Web Standards Project: Abandon Microsoft Internet Explorer and ‘Browse Happy’ – August 25, 2004
Security expert: Microsoft Internet Explorer ‘just cannot be trusted, use alternate browser’ – July 02, 2004
Security firm warns of new Internet Explorer flaw, advises ‘use a different browser’ – July 01, 2004
Microsoft axes Internet Explorer for Mac – June 13, 2003


  1. What really hacks me off about site designers that make browser sepcific sites is they artificially block other users from the site by detecting their browser. Half the time ya darn well know it will work in an alternative browser anyway but they don’t give you the option, they just lock you out.

    Since when did Microsoft decide they owned the universe.

    MW ‘stand’ as in, we need to take a STAND against this b.s.

  2. No it’s not Okay. Would they think it was okay for a Safari only sites?
    That would block all PC users from using it just like an Internet Explorer only site would. Since Mac users don’t have the latest version.

  3. In other news they decided not to allow Persians to apply for copyrights, because they don’t have anyone that can understand Farsi. David O. Carson said “We are planning on having people in place by the year 2023 to take care of the load, but until then we came to the conclusion that not accepting applications was the best course of action.”

    Different situation, same logic.

  4. Somebody, (I’m not smart enough), should get together with a lawyer, and put out a letter on the net which complies with all the BS needed by the dorks in the patent office, so that we could all send in the 5 copies needed.

    If I were an Apple lawyer, I would do it.

    I bid on a job for the patent office once and was given the directions on time to turn in the bid etc., I bid two million dollars less than the incumbent supplier and was disqualified because of a smudged date stamp. No recourse. Government morons!

  5. >ron, the Patent office and the Copyright office are 2 different government entities.>

    Yes but they act in the same pompous manner, and they’re run and staffed by people who couldn’t get a job in the real world.

  6. While I write this, I am on hold with Senator Chuck Schumer’s (of New York) office. Who knows if this is time well spent, but I think if enough of us called our goverment representatives, perhaps something can be done.

    Allow me to say that this is the first time I’ve ever picked up the phone to place such a call– but when I think of how many of us could be “locked out” from this website, it makes me mad. Even if we can use Safari/OmniWeb to “spoof” the website, it’s still not right. It is the perception of the matter that truly concerns me.

    While I usually hate when people do this, I find this appropriate: MW is office, as in call your Senator’s office.

  7. From the article, “We’re running a business, and testing is extremely costly,” said Stacey Schneider…”

    Since when has the U.S. government EVER been concerned with excessive spending of money? Having worked in DoD projects with the government, I’ve witnessed innumerable examples of pure financial waste.

  8. The quote on testing is from Siebel, their supplier of this bogus IE only software. They don’t want to spend any of their profits on testing so we have to suffer. And the funny thing is, they won’t support IE7 either when it comes out.

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