RAM Copying – An Issue of More Than Transitory Duration

13 10 2008

In The Cartoon Network LP, LLP v. CSC Holdings, Inc., No. 07-1480 & 07-1511 (S.D.N.Y. Aug. 4, 2008), the Second Circuit considered several important issues on the way to concluding that Cablevision’s proposed operation of a remote digital video recorder (RS-DVR) system does not infringe the rights of reproduction and public performance of its program providers.

Perhaps the most important issue in the case for new media lawyers is the court’s treatment of the issue of RAM, or buffer, copying. The Second Circuit concluded that while a copy in RAM may a “copy” under the Copyright Act, it is not a copy as a matter of law. In so ruling, the Second Circuit took on not only the oft-cited (and oft-criticized) Ninth Circuit opinion in MAI Systems Corp. v. Peak Computer, Inc., 991 F.2d 511 (9th Cir. 1993), it also took on the opinion of the Copyright Office, and arguably created a split in the circuits on the issue.


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RealNetworks v. Movie Studios over DVD copy functionality

10 10 2008

RealNetworks asks judge to lift movie studios’ restraining order
It wants to sell its now-blocked RealDVD copying program

By Gregg Keizer

October 7, 2008 (Computerworld) RealNetworks Inc. has asked a federal judge to lift a temporary restraining order that has blocked the company from selling its RealDVD movie copying software, court documents filed yesterday showed.

U.S. District Court Judge Marilyn Hall Patel is scheduled to hear arguments in the case


Wal-Mart joins MSN and Yahoo, leaves DRM servers online

10 10 2008

Wal-Mart is the latest company to change its mind about pulling its DRM key servers offline. After receiving “feedback” from customers who were about to be held hostage by their old music, the company has decided to leave the servers up… for now.

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Download services increasingly popular with universities

9 10 2008

Legal, school-sponsored music and movie services have exploded in popularity over the last few years—well, in popularity with administrators, at least. 15 percent of all US schools and 39 percent of the big ones offer such services. It’s not clear that students love them as much as admins do, however.

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Want to bypass DRM? Feds open to new DMCA exemptions

8 10 2008

The Library of Congress’ triennial review of “anticircumvention” rules is revving up once more; what DRM will we be allowed to bypass for the next three years?

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Wal-Mart Drops DRM Servers, Customers Lose Music

8 10 2008

Wal-Mart Drops DRM Servers, Customers Lose Musicby Scott NicholsPC World, publication date: 29 September 2008
“Wal-Mart is just following the recent trend of screwing over customers by dropping DRM, as led by Microsoft and Yahoo. Sure, customers can burn their DRM songs to a CD to preserve their songs after the DRM servers are shut down, but why should customers be punished with extra work for
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Code of Best Practices in Fair Use for Online Video

8 10 2008

This document is a code of best practices that helps creators, online providers, copyright holders, and others interested in the making of online video interpret the copyright doctrine of fair use. Fair use is the right to use copyrighted material without permission or payment under some circumstances.

This is a guide to current acceptable practices, drawing on the actual activities of creators, as discussed among other places in the study Recut, Reframe, Recycle: Quoting Copyrighted Material in User-Generated Video and backed by the judgment of a national panel of experts. It also draws, by way of analogy, upon the professional judgment and experience of documentary filmmakers, whose own code of best practices has been recognized throughout the film and television businesses.
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Recut, Reframe, Recycle

8 10 2008

Online videos frequently quote copyrighted material without permission, in ways that could be entirely legal through fair use. But these works are threatened by anti-piracy measures that do not distinguish adequately between legal and illegal uses.
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University of Texas launches e-textbook trial

7 10 2008

Longhorns will soon be reading phosphors instead of ink as college bookstores and textbook publishers anticipate the digital transition.

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RealDVD blocked by judge order

6 10 2008

On Wired.com just a few hours ago, it was announced that a judge has halted Real Networks from releasing RealDVD. According to Wired, the details of the order were not to be made public.

Personally, I can see where the MPAA is coming from in this particular battle. Why would anyone buy a DVD now that they can rent it, copy it, and take it back to the store.

Real DVD blocked.