Angry Pick-Up Artist Says He Won’t Issue Bogus YouTube Claim On Critic’s Video; Issues Bogus Claim On Critic’s Video

7 03 2018

Techdirt

March 3, 2018

Another case of YouTube’s copyright notification system being abused has filtered down through social media. A YouTuber whose channel specializes in game reviews was targeted by the developer of the game after some back-and-forth on the internet over his negative review.

Chris Hodgkinson reviewed a game called Super Seducer, which supposedly teaches dudes how to pick up women through the magical art of full-motion video. Call it “edutainment.” (If you must…) The developer, Richard La Ruina, didn’t care for his game being featured on a video series entitled “This is the Worst Game Ever.” Nor did he care for Hodgkinson’s suggestion the game offered nothing to men in the way of usable pick-up artistry.

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Google Gets Easy Section 230 Win in DC Circuit–Bennett v. Google

27 02 2018

[It’s impossible to blog about Section 230 without reminding you that it remains highly imperiled. Also, I have several other Section 230 rulings to blog that I’ll get to eventually.]

I previously described the facts of this case:

Dawn J. Bennett was a financial advisor in major trouble with the SEC. She also has a sporting apparel company. She hired an SEO, Pierson, to improve the search engine indexing of her website. After a payment dispute, Pierson posted a blog post that starts out “DJ Bennett, the luxury sporting goods company, does not pay their employees or contractors.” Bennett demanded Google de-index the blog post, and then sued Google for defamation and more when it didn’t.

One factual ambiguity that crept into the appellate opinion: The appellate opinion discusses Blogger’s “Content Policy.” However, I believe the post resided only on Pierson’s theexecutiveseo.com domain, not on the Blogger platform. Therefore, I think this is really a search engine de-indexing case, not a blog hosting case.

The district court ruled for Google. In a brief opinion, the DC Circuit affirmed.

 

Case CitationBennett v. Google, LLC, 2018 WL 1021235 (D.C. Cir. Feb. 23, 2018)

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Congress Probably Will Ruin Section 230 This Week (SESTA/FOSTA Updates)

27 02 2018

For the past year, I’ve been covering Congress’ efforts to create a sex trafficking exception to Section 230’s immunity. From the beginning, it was clear that the proponents did not understand Section 230’s powerful but counter-intuitive doctrinal mechanisms, yet their initiative to gut Section 230 had momentum. Two bills were introduced: SESTA in the Senate and FOSTA in the House. Both bills as introduced were terrible.

After a Senate Commerce Committee hearing, SESTA was amended to fix some of its roughest edges, but the amendments didn’t resolve SESTA’s structural flaw (I’ll discuss that below). As part of a House Judiciary Committee hearing, FOSTA as introduced was replaced by substitute FOSTA, which still had problems but represented a more productive approach to address sex trafficking. Amended SESTA and substitute FOSTA passed the Senate Commerce Committee and House Judiciary Committee, respectively, queuing both up for passage by their respective chambers. However, amended SESTA has been slowed by Sen. Wyden’s hold; and for reasons that aren’t clear to me, the House Judiciary Committee didn’t report substitute FOSTA until last week. Ten days ago, the House Energy & Commerce Committee waived jurisdiction over FOSTA to help get the bill on the House floor.

Ever since substitute FOSTA emerged, one of the key questions has been how Senate and House might reconcile the different policy approaches in SESTA and FOSTA if both advanced. No one I spoke to, not even the inside-Congress experts, were confident in their predictions. Last week, a backroom deal was announced that apparently answers that question, but in substantively and procedurally deficient ways. This is BAD NEWS.

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ESA Comes Out Against Allowing Museums To Curate Online Video Games For Posterity

27 02 2018

Tech dirt
[retrieved 2-27-18]

A week or so back, we discussed the Museum of Art and Digital Entertainment (MADE) calling on the Copyright Office to extend exemptions to anti-circumvention in the DMCA to organizations looking to curate and preserve online games. Any reading of stories covering this idea needs to be grounded in the understanding that the Librarian of Congress has already extended these same exemptions to video games that are not online multiplayer games. Games of this sort are art, after all, and exemptions to the anti-circumvention laws allow museums, libraries, and others to preserve and display older games that may not natively run on current technology, or those that have been largely lost in terms of physical product. MADE’s argument is that online multiplayer games are every bit the art that these single-player games are and deserve preservation as well.

Well, the Entertainment Software Association, an industry group that largely stumps for the largest gaming studios and publishers in the industry, has come out in opposition to preserving online games, arguing that such preservation is a threat to the industry.

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No DMCA safe harbor for Cox’s 13-strike policy for terminating repeat infringers

22 02 2018

Heather Smith-Carra
February 21, 2018

IP Watchdog

On February 1, 2018, the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Fourth Circuit issued a decision in the case, BMG Rights Management LLC v. Cox Communications, Inc. The Fourth Circuit affirmed in part the district court’s granting of summary judgment to BMG on the § 512(a) Digital Millennium Copyright Act (DMCA) safe harbor defense. Ultimately, the Fourth Circuit agreed with the district court’s decision that Cox was not entitled to the safe harbor defense, finding that Cox’s 13-strike policy for repeat infringers was effectively no policy at all, and far less than the termination policy required in order to maintain safe harbor protections.

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The content in this post was found at https://www.ipwatchdog.com/2018/02/21/no-dmca-safe-harbor-coxs-13-strike-policy-terminating-repeat-infringers/id=93725/ Clicking the title link will take you to the source of the post. and was not authored by the moderators of privacynnewmedia.com. Clicking the title link will take you to the source of the post.

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Court Realizes It Totally Screwed Up An Injunction Against Zazzle For Copyright Infringement

22 02 2018

Last year we wrote about a bizarre and troubling DMCA case involving the print-on-demand company Zazzle, in which the judge in the district court bizarrely and wrongly claimed that Zazzle lost its DMCA safe harbors because the allegedly infringing works were printed on a t-shirt, rather than remaining digitally (even though it was the end user using the infringing work, and Zazzle’s system just processed it automatically). To add insult to injury, in November, the judge then issued a permanent injunction against Zazzle for this infringement.

However, it appears that no one is more troubled about this permanent injunction issued by Judge Stephen Wilson… than Judge Stephen Wilson.

In early February, Wilson released a new order reversing his earlier order and chastising himself for getting things wrong.

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Cox Loses DMCA Safe Harbor but Gets a New Trial on Contributory Infringement–BMG v. Cox

16 02 2018

BMG sued Cox for the alleged copyright infringement of its users. The court described Cox’s “graduated” policy for terminating subscribers:

The first notice alleging a subscriber’s infringement produces no action from Cox. The second through seventh notices result in warning emails from Cox to the subscriber. After the eighth and ninth notices, Cox limits the subscriber’s Internet access to a single webpage that contains a warning, but the subscriber can reactivate complete service by clicking an acknowledgement. After the tenth and eleventh notices, Cox suspends services, requiring the subscriber to call a technician, who, after explaining the reason for suspension and advising removal of infringing content, reactivates service. After the twelfth notice, the subscriber is suspended and directed to a specialized technician, who, after another warning to cease infringing conduct, reactivates service. After the thirteenth notice, the subscriber is again suspended, and, for the first time, considered for termination. Cox never automatically terminates a subscriber.

Cox also limited its processing of notes from copyright owners or agents.

BMG hired Rightscorp to monitor police infringements. Rightscorp issues takedown requests, and it asks ISPs to forward settlement requests to the subscribers. Prior to BMG having engaged Rightscorp, Comcast decided to cease processing takedown requests from Rightscorp. Rightscorp sent “millions of notices” to Cox on BMG’s behalf, but BMG never viewed any of these.

The trial court held that a reasonable jury could not conclude that Cox maintained a policy of terminating repeat infringers. BMG put forth evidence from which a jury could conclude that Cox knew of accounts being used to effect infringing activity but nevertheless failed to terminate such accounts. The case went to trial (essentially) on damages, and the verdict came back for $25MM in BMG’s favor.Case citation: BMG Rights Mgmt (US) LLC v. Cox Communications Inc., 2018 WL 650316 (4th Cir. Feb. 1, 2018).

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DMCA 2017: 9th Cir. decides safe harbor, anti-circumvention cases

31 01 2018

In 2017, there were several noteworthy decisions relating to the Digital Millennium Copyright Act (DMCA). Specifically, the Ninth Circuit addressed two separate cases, one dealing with safe harbor provisions, the other on anti-circumvention. This article discusses three separate decisions including Mavrix Photographs LLC v. LiveJournal Inc., 873 F.3d 1045 (9th Cir. 2017)(on DMCA safe harbor), and Disney Enterprises, Inc. v. VidAngel, Inc., 869 F.3d 848 (9th Cir. 2017)(anti-circumvention provisions).

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DMCA Safe Harbor Doesn’t Protect Zazzle’s Printing of Physical Items–Greg Young Publishing v. Zazzle

3 01 2018

The court summarizes the key facts: “GYPI alleges that Zazzle has publicly displayed 41 paintings by Westmoreland or Erickson on its website, and that Zazzle has created consumer products bearing these images.” GYPI lacked standing to enforce the Westmoreland paintings, but the court says GYPI has sufficient standing to enforce the Erickson paintings.

The case turns to the 512(c) safe harbor:

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Case citation: Greg Young Publishing, Inc. v. Zazzle, Inc., 2017 WL 2729584 (C.D. Cal. May 1, 2017)

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Ruling in Digital Copyright Case Puts a Dent in DMCA’s Safe Harbor Shield

31 12 2017

A federal appeals court ruling Friday has the potential to raise copyright liability risks for online platforms that allow users to moderate content post by other users. The case decided by the Ninth U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals concerns the “safe harbor” protections of the Digital Millennium Copyright Act of 1998,

Mavrix Photographs, LLC v. LiveJournal, Inc., No. 14-56596 (9th Cir. 2017)

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