Update: Meghan and Hot Topic have settled this situation. Fans of the adorable webcomic Kawaii Not were surprised to discover buttons made from comic panels for sale at Hot Topic. The problem? The artist sort of didn’t license the designs to Hot Topic, and they are copyrighted. Artist Meghan Murphy does sell her own buttons…and these aren’t those. [More]
The folks at Google are a busy bunch — in the same day that they made your Gmail contact list a public matter with their Facebook wannabe Google Buzz, they pulled the plug without warning on a handful of popular music blogs in their blogger.com network for alleged violations of that holiest of Internet grails, the Digital Millenium Copyright Act. [More]
Phillip K. Dick wrote a book called “Do Androids Dream of Electric Sheep?,” which is too long to put in the title of this post, but was adapted into the film Blade Runner (which is awesome.) In this book, the android model in question is called the “Nexus-6.” Google’s phone, which runs an operating system called “Android” is called the “Nexus One.” This has pissed off Phillip K. Dick’s daughter. [More]
After the death of a relative, Mike put together a photo tribute for the funeral, in order to “remember the good times,” he says. Only a Walmart cashier put a stop to his purchase. Here’s what happened. Do you think Walmart was in the right?
Coshocton, OH has its free muni WiFi back up, less than a week after it was shut down by MPAA actions over a single illegal movie download.
The MPAA forced the town Coshocton, OH to shut down their entire free municipal WiFi network because of a single instance of a single user illegally downloading a copyrighted movie. Here are some of the many other things the town used to use the network for:
It’s a natural impulse to want to support the little guy, the David who faces down a powerful Goliath. That’s why it’s easy to get behind this guy’s claims that a copycat business is suing him to force him to abandon his own copyrights. Wtf!, you might say when you read something like that. Is that even possible? It is, and the story is more nuanced when you look at both sides, which makes it a good example of why it’s sometimes hard to be a “good consumer” when deciding where to spend your money.
Since last year, a small company called Psystar has been selling Mac clones that, in some cases, are more powerful than Apple’s own computers in the same price range. Now, the company has hit on another way to spread the OS X love: It will begin licensing its software to other companies that want to build and sell ersatz Macs. There are just a couple of problems that potential buyers might want to be aware of: Apple hasn’t given Psystar permission to do this, and is in the process of suing the company for copyright infringement. Oh, and Psystar is also in Chapter 11.
A Boston jury yesterday ruled that file sharer Joel Tenenbaum would have to pay the Recording Industry of America $675,000 for sharing 30 copyrighted songs. The hefty award was all the more surprising because Tenenbaum was represented by a crack team of legal eagles from Harvard’s law school. The trial didn’t unfold nearly the way they planned…
The ebook “war” is a race to the bottom, apparently, with Barnes & Noble trying to out-do Amazon on DRM stupidity. A reader emailed B&N customer service to point out that their “free books” offer consists of 5 public domain titles that are no longer protected under copyright, yet are still locked down with digital rights management (DRM). Their response? “For copyright protection purposes, these files are encrypted and cannot be converted or printed.”
So you’ve got a Kindle, and you have books on it, and you want to keep those books—no matter what Amazon or a publisher decides you deserve in the future. Your legal options are limited, but you do have some.
Pez Candy is suing the Pez musuem in Burlingame, CA for copyright infringement. The museum has a 7-foot-tall Pez dispenser that they want destroyed. Maybe Pez should make a new candy flavor called “Copyright Overkill” that tastes like all the joy has been removed. [Laughing Squid] (Thanks to sizer!) (Photo: Hryck.)
Not content to let the RIAA get all the recent publicity for stupid lawsuits, ASCAP has sued AT&T over sales of ringtones, saying each time a ringtone plays it’s a public performance and royalties should be paid. Luckily (?) for consumers, ASCAP wants AT&T, not individuals, to pay—although we wonder what they’ll say when you take a track from your own library and make a ringtone out of it.
The guy who made the famous Obama poster? I went to a talk tonight at the New York Public Library between him (Shepard Fairey), Lawrence Lessig, and Steven Johnson about how remixing plays into our, on the one hand, corporate and litigious, and on the other, mashing up and free-wheeling, society. Here are my favorite quotes/ideas from the night: