It wasn’t too long ago that the RIAA compiled their list of the universities most infested by alleged music pirates, and now it seems the MPAA is following suit. The RIAA used their list to target universities, sending threatening letters to the school’s administration, insisting that they forward “settlement letters” to students who matched IP addresses the record companies had harvested from P2P sharing programs. Now the MPAA has a list of its own, compiled at the request of the U.S. House of Representatives Committee on the Judiciary. Read the list inside…
Tanya Andersen, a 42 year-old mother on disability accused of downloading “gangster rap”, doesn’t want the RIAA to interrogate her 10 year-old. The RIAA says the 10 year-old is a material witness. Tanya’s motion to the court argues:
“Emphasizing whether they can subject this young girl to distress, plaintiffs ignore whether they should. The should aspect of this evaluation is easy: Mrs. Andersen and her daughter should not be subjected to any more abuse in this litigation whatsoever.”
Tanya’s motion goes on to say that the plaintiffs know she is not the kazaa user who downloaded and shared music files, and that “a 5 minute Google search is all that was necessary to establish this and avoid the stress and damages to Ms. Andersen and her daughter.”—MEGHANN MARCO
Today, on behalf of the public radio system, NPR filed a motion for rehearing with the Copyright Royalty Board in response to its March 2, 2007 decision on rates for streaming internet music. This action is the first step in NPR’s efforts to reverse the decision, and it will be followed by an appeal of the Board’s decision to be filed with the U.S. Court of Appeals for the DC Circuit.
Yeah! They’re bringing the fight! According to Andi Sporkin, Vice President for Communications, NPR: “The Board’s decision to dramatically raise public radio stations’ rates was based on inaccurate assumptions and lack of understanding of the issues. The new rates inexplicably break with the longstanding tradition of recognizing public radio’s non-commercial, non-profit role, while the procedures we’re being asked to now undertake for measurement are non-existent, arbitrary and costly.” Read the filing inside.
RIAA Sues Stroke Victim in Michigan [Recording Industry vs The People via BoingBoing]
Ever try to explain why DRM is bad for consumers to someone who just didn’t get it? Wired’s Listening Post Blog has a bunch of good examples. We don’t know if they’d work on your Dad (does Dad give a crap about Linux and Region 2 DVDs?), but they are nice examples of ways that DRM gets in the way of consumer goals. —MEGHANN MARCO
- “Williams-Sonoma, which operates Pottery Barn and other chains, claims in a federal lawsuit filed last week that a quilted Christmas stocking sold at Target stores contains “every distinctive element of Pottery Barn Christmas stockings,” right down to the snowflakes and blue sky.
Williams-Sonoma isn’t the first to sue Target over copyright infringement. “Lucky Brand Dungarees, which sells $100-plus jeans worn by the likes of Salma Hayek and Sandra Bullock, filed a lawsuit in federal court in New York, accusing Target of copying its distinctive floral design jeans and its rear-pocket stitching.” It seems like Target is taking their knock-off aesthetic a bit too far. They’d better get back to partnering with designers and stay away from ripping them off, lest lawsuits drive up prices.—MEGHANN MARCO
The US Copyright office killed cellphone
crippleware companies locking your phone to their sepecific service last week. We heard about this but didn’t post anything, as we didn’t see anything actually compelling cellphone companies to let you enjoy the full use of your phone. full phone portability.
Today, Coach dropped a trademark infringement suit alleging Target sold counterfeit versions of a popular purse, the Python Signature Striped Demi.
Watch out! Don’t burn that Shania Twain CD with Microsoft Windows Media Player 11, or it might encode whatever you rip with DRM.
Hey, we’re all for Circuit City flouting the DMCA. It’s a bogus law, as anti-consumer as they come. So we were a bit disappointed when Bill Cimino, director of corporate communications, clarified that the sign wasn’t the opening jab in a legal title fight between Circuit City and the RIAA/MPAA, but was instead a disconnect between the wishes of corporate and that particular Circuit City’s store manager.
A small soda company is suing Coca-Cola for trademark infringement. And they’re wrong.