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Archive for the ‘copyright’ Category

The kids at Digg have noticed that someone posted a huge collection of Scientology documents on the web.  And from digg, someone posted a torrent of the file to PirateBay.  As I suggested last week, this is the obvious and natural consequence of drawing attention to that silly Tom Cruise video- people will yank the CoS chain, because now they know that it is guaranteed to get a reaction.

And the more that Scientology gets worked up about this, the more fun the internets will get out of dragging the cult’s most embarrasing secrets into the public eye.

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Someone should remind those Scientologist nutjobs: that’s just not how the internet works.  While the CoS is one of the very very few organizations that have successfully forced posts to be removed from slashdot, they have not been able to keep their secret (and totally hilarious) creation mythology off the internet.

And you would think they would have learned their lesson by now!  (more…)

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This kind of double-speak is exactly what we saw from SCOX in 2003 and 2004.  And look how well that worked out for them.  Note to observers: when the lies that a company is telling reporters are different from the lies it’s telling to the court, that might be a signal the business is in trouble.

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Much of what the Rude Pundit writes is uncouth, scatalogical, borderline obscene.  Which makes it so much more moving when he puts up a post like this one.

[V]oters have realized they don’t have to cast their lot in with her. The forced march to the altar with Hillary Clinton has been halted. As much as some will try to make it into something sexist, it won’t be. It’ll be because, fairly or unfairly, we just got tired of what she represents.

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There is an article up at the NYT today about the RIAA lawsuit that is currently pending against 17 John Doe defendants at the University of Oregon.  The article is relatively even-handed as these things go, hitting the typical applause lines for each side: college students don’t respect copyright, stealing music is bad, settlement offers from the record companies are extortion, etc etc etc.  Adam Liptak also does a fair job of pointing out that this suit is interesting primarily because the state attorney general’s office is involved, and the same point gets a plug over at the NYT Law blog.

But while the article contains several quotes sourced to RIAA capo Cary Sherman, he doesn’t bother to quote anyone who is, you know, actually FROM Oregon.  (more…)

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If I was the record industry, I’d be very worried.  The last time Groklaw started paying attention to frivolous lawsuits about imaginary copyright infringement, the people who picked the fight ended up dead.

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(updated 10:17 pm- slashdot says that the WaPo story I quote below is, um, misleading.  Or maybe it’s  just wrong.  Hooray for traditional journalism.)
The RIAA is breaking out a new legal tactic:

In legal documents in its federal case against Jeffrey Howell, a Scottsdale, Ariz., man who kept a collection of about 2,000 music recordings on his personal computer, the industry maintains that it is illegal for someone who has legally purchased a CD to transfer that music into his computer.

The industry’s lawyer in the case, Ira Schwartz, argues in a brief filed earlier this month that the MP3 files Howell made on his computer from legally bought CDs are “unauthorized copies” of copyrighted recordings.

This particular claim is a perfect illustration of the evils inherent in government-granted monopolies. People in general have settled expectations about personal property that are inconsistent with the desired economic scenario for the copyright cartels. When you buy a CD or a book, you don’t sign a contract. You don’t need to get a license from the author to read the book. The purchase transaction is exactly like any other purchase of physical goods. From a customer’s perspective, buying a CD is exactly like buying a donut or a chainsaw. Customers expect that all the rights of ownerhship which attach to other tangible personal property also attach to items like CDs.

The copyright monopoly has metastasized so far that music companies are, in effect, arguing that even though you bought the CD, you can only listen to the music on it on devices they have approved. At the exact same time that companies all over the world are designing and producing technology to allow people to more easily create and share music, movices, and the written word, the companies that stand to benefit the most from emergence of new talent are doing everything they can to poison the well.

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