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100TH CONGRESS

2D SESSION

S. 2361

To amend title 18, United States Code, to preserve personal privacy with respect

to the rental, purchase, or delivery of video tapes or similar audio visual materials and the use of library materials or services.

IN THE SENATE OF THE UNITED STATES

May 10 (legislative day, May 9), 1988 Mr. LEAHY (for himself, Mr. GRASSLEY, Mr. Simon, and Mr. Simpson) intro

duced the following bill; which was read twice and referred to the Committee on the Judiciary

A BILL To amend title 18, United States Code, to preserve personal

privacy with respect to the rental, purchase, or delivery of video tapes or similar audio visual materials and the use of library materials or services.

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Be it enacted by the Senate and House of Representa

2 tives of the United States of America in Congress assembled,

3 SECTION 1. SHORT TITLE.

4 This Act may be cited as the “Video and Library 5 Privacy Protection Act of 1988”.

6 SEC. 2. CHAPTER 121 AMENDMENT.

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(a) IN GENERAL.-Chapter 121 of title 18, United

8 States Code, is amended

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(1) by redesignating section 2710 as section 2711;

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(2) by inserting after section 2709 the following:

4 “8 2710. Wrongful disclosure of video tape rental or sale

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"(a) DEFINITIONS.—For purposes of this section

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"(1) the term 'patron' means any individual who

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"(2) the term 'consumer' means any renter, pur

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chaser, or subscriber of goods or services from a video

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“(3) the term 'library' means an institution which

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operates as a public library or serves as a library for any university, school, or college;

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“(4) the term ‘ordinary course of business' means only debt collection activities and the transfer of

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ownership;

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“(5) the term “personally identifiable information'

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includes information which identifies a person

as

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having requested or obtained specific materials or serv

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ices from a video tape service provider or library; and

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“(6) the term ‘video tape service provider' means

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any person, engaged in the business of rental, sale, or

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delivery of pre-recorded video cassette tapes or similar

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"(b) VIDEO TAPE RENTAL AND SALE RECORDS.-(1)

6 A video tape service provider who knowingly discloses, to

7 any person, personally identifiable information concerning 8 any consumer of such provider shall be liable to the ag9 grieved person for the relief provided in subsection (d).

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"(2) A video tape service provider may disclose person

11 ally identifiable information concerning any consumer

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“(A) to the consu

er;

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“(B) to any person with the informed, written

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consent of the consumer given at the time the disclo

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“(C) to a law enforcement agency pursuant to a

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court order authorizing such disclosure if

“(i) the consumer is given reasonable notice, by the law enforcement agency, of the court pro

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ceeding relevant to the issuance of the court order

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and is afforded the opportunity to appear and contest the claim of the law enforcement agency; and

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ing in criminal activity and the information sought
is highly probative and material to the case;
“(D) to any person if the disclosure is solely of

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the names and addresses of consumers and if

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“(i) the video tape service provider has pro

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vided the consumer with the opportunity, in a

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writing separate from any rental, sales, or sub

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or indirectly, the title, description, or subject

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matter of any video tapes or other audio visual

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material;

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"(E) to any person if the disclosure is incident to

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the ordinary course of business of the video tape serv

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ice provider; or

“(F) pursuant to a court order, in a civil proceed

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ing upon a showing of compelling need for the informa

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tion that cannot be accommodated by any other means,

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“(i) the consumer is given reasonable notice, by the person seeking the disclosure, of the court proceeding relevant to the issuance of the court

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"(ii) the consumer is afforded the opportunity

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to appear and contest the claim of the person seeking the disclosure.

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4 If an order is granted pursuant to subparagraph (C) or (F), 5 the court shall impose appropriate safeguards against unau

6 thorized disclosure.

7 "(c) LIBRARY RECORDS.-(1) Any library which know8 ingly discloses, to any person, personally identifiable informa9 tion concerning any patron of such institution shall be liable

10 to the aggrieved person for the relief provided in subsection

11 (d).

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“(2) A library may disclose personally identifiable infor

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"(B) to any person with the informed written con

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sent of the patron given at the time the disclosure is

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sought;

"(C) to a law enforcement agency pursuant to a

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court order authorizing such disclosure if

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“(i) the patron is given reasonable notice, by the law enforcement agency, of the court proceeding relevant to the issuance of the court order and

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is afforded the opportunity to appear and contest

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the claim of the law enforcement agency; and

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