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December 22, 2008

Updates: Copyright Cases to Watch

Last year on this site, I wrote a series of articles about important copyright cases that could seriously impact blogging and the Internet at large. All in all there were five such cases, each with the ability to drastically change how bloggers and other Web publishers operated.

Now that more than a year has passed since the original articles, it seems like a good time to go back and see what has happened with those cases where, they sit right now and where they are likely heading. read more

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August 25, 2008

The Most Aggressive Copyright Holders

When it comes to matters of copyright, some companies have an earned reputation as being attack dogs. They are known for filing takedown notices at the drop of a hat, throwing lawsuits around at will and generally intimidating anyone that they feel gets too close to their intellectual property.

Though there is nothing wrong with being aggressive about your copyright, especially when you make your living from it. The problem comes when companies cross the line and sacrifice the rights of users and the public in their bid to protect their work.

These attack dogs are dangerous for many reasons. First, they are the ones most likely to file takedown notices, including against bloggers. Second, they often times trample free speech and run afoul of the law. Finally, they also end up writing both the copyright news we read and many of the copyright laws we follow.

So who are the most aggressive copyright holders? Though such a list is entirely subjective, here is my personal list of the most aggressive major copyright holders I have been tracking. read more

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July 15, 2008

Google and Viacom Agrees to Preserve Anonymity

As you probably know, a court ruled that Google would have to turn over user data from YouTube to Viacom, as part of the list of viewed videos that Viacom claims (probably justly so) are illegally available on YouTube. This made some people sweat, but more importantly, it pointed out that not even the all-mighty Google can keep your stuff secret for you, unless they delete it of course.

However, good news just in! TechCrunch reports that Viacom agrees to Googles request to anonymize the user IDs and IP addresses, although it will be able to track them down. Michael Arrington sums it up nicely:

The new order, filed this evening, states that Google will substitue user id’s and IP addresses for anonymous but unique identifiers.

For more on this, read the full order over at TechCrunch.

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