Stories of Interest

Who Clings to Old Models Again?

Valuing Music in a Digital World by Carey Sherman

“The notice and takedown system—intended as a reasonable enforcement mechanism—has instead been subverted into a discount licensing system where copyright owners and artists are paid far less than their creativity is worth.”  Read the full story at Forbes here.

Money in Politics is Child’s Play

How Google Could Rig the 2016 Election by Robert Epstein

“There are at least three very real scenarios whereby Google—perhaps even without its leaders’ knowledge—could shape or even decide the election next year.”  Read the full story at Politico here.

A More Complete Reading of Locke

Why Intellectual Property Rights? A Lockean Justification by Adam Mossoff

Professor Adam Mossoff of the George Mason School of Law rebuts academia’s nouveau-savant arguments citing Locke in order to argue against IP as a right akin to other property rights.  Read the full essay here at Library of Law and Liberty.

Beware HR. 9 Patent Reform Bill

Does Stealing Intellectual Property Boost Innovation? by Joseph Allen

“Confiscating other people’s property is hardly the way to stimulate prosperity or creativity. If it were, Venezuela would be one of the richest, most innovative countries in the world instead of a place where you can’t buy toilet paper.” See full story at IP Watchdog here.

Milestone Ruling in Canada

In Piracy Fight, Google Dealt Huge Defeat in Canadian Court by Eriq Gardner

This is a case to watch for advocates of creator rights because all of Google’s arguments against an injunction for selective site blocking failed in the Canadian court.  See full story in the Hollywood Reporter here.

Selling ourselves cheap?

The Servitude Bubble by Umair Haque

Umar Haque, writing for Medium, offers compelling thoughts on the illusory economic promises of the tech industry and the money that pours into its many dubious ventures.  See full story at Medium here.

Organizing the world’s…whatever

Google’s downranking of pirate sites is a big fat LIE by Ellen Seidler

Google search results not only put a pirate result in first place, but at the bottom of the page offer these handy suggested search phrases that also offer ways find illegal streams or downloads of my film.  See full story at VoxIndie here.

Mind the TOS if You Care About Copyright

Browse wrap Agreement Wraps up Copyright Infringement Case for Defendant by Micah W. Miller

Clickwrap agreements are generally upheld because they require affirmative action on the part of the user, according to the Court. In contrast, a browsewrap agreement does not require an affirmative click by the user; instead, a user agrees by using the website. Because no affirmative step by the user is required, the Court noted, the validity of a browse wrap agreement depends on whether the user has actual or constructive notice of a website’s terms and conditions.  See full story at National Law Review here.

Can We Just Stop Rationalizing Piracy Already?

Another Movie That Won’t Get Made Because of Piracy by Scott Beggs

If you pirated The ABCs of Death 2 and liked it, you’re directly responsible for depriving yourself of another entry. If you didn’t like it, maybe it doesn’t matter to you personally, but think of all the movies you pirated and loved, and recognize that — like with this situation — there’s a very real possibility that you hurt the filmmakers financially. The very ones who made something that you liked or loved. See full story at FilmSchoolRejects here.

Fans Rip Tidal Exclusive Beyonce Track and Gift to YouTube

But there’s a problem. The nature of an ‘exclusive’ surely demands that fans don’t rip the title and upload it onto YouTube – and that’s exactly what they’ve done numerous times with Die With You.

In fact, it was on the video site within minutes of arriving on Tidal.

Sony Music Entertainment appears to have been submitting copyright claims left, right and centre on YouTube, but to little avail; Die With You, released on the seventh anniversary of Jay Z and Beyonce’s marriage, just keeps on cropping up in new channels on Google’s platform. See full story at Music Business News Worldwide here.

Safe Harbors Mission Creep?

‘Modernise’ safe harbour laws for the tech oligarch era – IP czar by Andrew Orlowski

Today, however, a handful of tech oligarchs dictate the terms of trade; huge companies use safe harbour as a competitive weapon to force deals they couldn’t otherwise dream of making. Last year Google clobbered tiny independent music companies with a contract which obliged them to indemnify Google against unauthorised uploads of their own music. See full story at The Register here.

Irish High Court Orders Three-Strikes Piracy Rule

Irish ISPs Forced to Adopt Three-Strikes Piracy Rule by Richard Smirke

[Judge Cregan] dismissed UPC’s argument that it is not their responsibility to police what material its customers access or download and adjourned the case until next month to enable all parties to prepare a submission on how the ‘three-strikes’ order is to be implemented. See full story at Billboard here.

But Doesn’t Hollywood Own Washington?

Google and Obama: You’re too close for comfort by Andrew Orlowski

It’s five years since I compared Google to Halliburton, the defence contractor that received large contracts from the Bush Administration, and whose former boss was George W Bush’s righthand-man Dick Cheney. Today that comparison looks horribly unfair – unfair to Halliburton.

The Wall Street Journal has revealed America’s federal competition watchdog, the FTC, gathered compelling evidence that Google was using its dominance to crush startups, and dictate the terms of trade for an entire industry in its favour. This “industry” is not some obscure business backwater, but advertising: the lifeblood of much of the media. See full story at The Register here.

More Money for Nuthin’ & Clicks for Free

YouTube Piracy-perfecting the art of spinning (stolen) straw into gold by Ellen Seidler

YouTube, its users, and shady certified“aggregators,” partner together to make money off pirated TV shows, movies & music. YouTube’s life-blood is advertising and by now it’s become pretty clear that Google doesn’t give a hoot about what videos it slaps ads onto.  After all, why should vetting content BEFORE putting advertising on it get in the way of company profits right? See full story at here.

Double Standards of Site Owners?

This Photo Was Removed by Instagram … by Swetambara Chaudhary

India is often targeted for being an outrageously hyper-patriarchial society. But let’s face it, it isn’t just India. Rupi Kaur, a Sikh poet studying at the University of Waterloo, Canada, knows that only too well. She posted an image which is a part of her photoseries project for a visual rhetoric course on Instagram. It was subsequently taken down by Instagram citing violation of the ‘Community Guidelines’.  See full story at here.

Rethinking Barriers

Remapping a Broken Internet by Chris Ruen

Disrupt Dwelling?

In Japan, Digital Wage Slaves are Living in Internet Cafés by Natalie Shoemaker

Internet cafés are nothing new, but over the past decade in Japan these 24-hour stalls have been adjusting their services to cater to a new clientèle — temporary workers that make too little to afford an apartment. Director Shiho Fukada has created an insightful video about these “internet café refugees” or “cyber homeless,” which began cropping up in the late 1990s. However, it has been a growing issue in the new millennium. See full article at BigThink here.

No Hacking Necessary

‘ISIS Hackers’ Googled Their Hit List; Troops’ Names Were Already on Public Websites by Nancy A. Youssef

So much for ISIS’s super-sophisticated hacker army.

A group calling itself the “Islamic State Hacking Division” posted the names, addresses, and photos of 100 U.S. service members on Saturday, claiming it had obtained the information by breaching military security.

As it turns out, the group didn’t need to hack the Pentagon. At least two-thirds of the troops on the ISIS “hit list” had been featured on public Defense Department websites designed to promote the military, The Daily Beast has learned. See full article at The Daily Beast here.

“Can there be freedom without consent?” asks the punk rocker.

The ‘Free Internet’ Will Not Set You Free by East Bay Ray 

One of the most important aspects of liberty is having a say in your own destiny, the right to give or not give consent. How important is consent? Well, here’s an example. Most of us think that hugs are good, right? They makes the world a nicer place, warm and fuzzy, right? Well, not always. When it’s not consensual, it’s sexual harassment. It’s groping. It’s creepy. And you feel violated, your freedom and liberty violated. See full article at The Observer here.

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