The Internet is built on copying. That's true at a purely technical level: as packets of data move around the world, they are copied from network to network, and finally to the end-user's device. But it's also true in terms of how people use the Internet: they are constantly sending copies across the network, whether partial snippets or entire works.
It has been a busy time for those of us who watch the doings of the Copyright Office. In addition to releasing a massive report on Orphan Works and Mass Digitization, about which I have written here, the Copyright Office (CO) is the subject of a piece of legislation introduced as a discussion draft on June 3.
The owners of the film Dallas Buyers Club and the multinationals supporting the world wide fight against illegal downloading have adopted tactics that go too far. While the media companies deserve a modicum of protection from blatant copyright infringement the Coalition’s heavy-handed legislation is likely to cause the average consumer far more headaches than discomfit online pirates.
In a lawsuit filed by Elsevier, one of the largest academic publishers, Sci-Hub.org is facing millions of dollars in damages. However, the site has no intentions of backing down and will continue its fight to keep access to scientific knowledge free and open. "I think Elsevier's business model is itself illegal," Sci-Hub founder Alexandra Elbakyan says.
It's really amazing the lengths to which some copyright maximalists will go to push their agenda. Take, for example, the CEO of News Ltd., (the Australian wing of Murdoch's News Corp.), Kim Williams. In a keynote speech to the Australian International Movie Convention, he gave one those typical barn burner speeches about how the entertainment and media industry are collapsing due to infringement and that we need greater enforcement and new laws. Typical stuff. Of course, it's almost entirely wrong.
Canada has now extended the protection of copyright in performances and sound recordings to 70 years after the release date of the sound recording. This new term is effective 23 June 2015. So pencil in on page 132 of Canadian Copyright Law, Fourth Edition, the new duration for sound recordings: 70 years.
The film company, Roadshow, the pay television company Foxtel, and Rupert Murdoch’s News Corp and News Limited — as well as copyright industries — have been clamouring for new copyright powers and remedies. In the summer break, the Coalition Government has responded to such entreaties from its industry supporters and donors, with a new package of copyright laws and policies.
The government's decision to introduce private copying rules, which allow people who have acquired permanent and legal copies of copyrighted works to make personal copies of that material, without also introducing a mechanism to compensate rights holders for that activity, was not supported by sufficient evidence, the Court held.
As Australia's site blocking Bill took a step closer to becoming law yesterday, Communications Minister Malcolm Turnbull made it extra clear that VPN use won't be a problem under the legislation. Ordering "the big boys" to sort out the VPN issue between themselves, Turnbull told rightsholders to leave consumers alone.
Last week, Tim Cushing explained that one of the bad outcomes of the recent European Parliament committee vote on Julia Reda's copyright reform report was that it recommended limiting freedom of panorama -- the ability to take pictures and make videos of public objects -- to non-commercial use.
FRANKFURT (Reuters) - A German regional court has ruled that Google's video-sharing website YouTube must prevent users from posting material that infringes copyright law once such a video has been brought to its attention.
In November, BMG Music and Round Hill Music did what some copyright holders have long threatened: they sued a large ISP, Cox Communications, seeking to hold it responsible for the piracy taking place on its network.
Until now there has been no efficient mechanism for copyright owners and exclusive licensees to block access to online locations based overseas that encourage copyright infringement. The Copyright Amendment (Online Infringement) Act 2015, which commenced on Friday, introduces new laws to give rights holders who discover infringing material online a way of requiring carriage service providers (CSPs) to take reasonable steps to block access to the content, via an injunction from the Federal Court.
Data retention, site blocking and three-strikes laws highlight 12 transformative months for online freedom in Australia. We reflect on the year's key moments in the words of the major players involved.
The World Intellectual Property Organization committee on copyright is meeting next week with an agenda of discussions on a potential international instrument to protect broadcasting organisations’ copyrights, and at the same time exceptions and limitations to copyright for the benefit of libraries, archives, education, research, and persons with disabilities other than sight impairment.
The Copyright Office report on Orphan Works and Mass Digitization is an important step in the long road toward resolving the orphan works problem and seeing more of our cultural and intellectual heritage made accessible to the public and to authors who want to build upon this heritage.
A nonprofit that is strapped for cash needs an image for its website. Its web designer does a quick online search, a simple cut and paste, and voilà—photographs for the website, free and easy. The nonprofit has heard that since it is nonprofit and tax-exempt, its uses are not commercial, and thus are "fair use." But not so fast—nonprofits are subject to copyright law just like any other person or entity and do not get a fair use pass simply by virtue of being a nonprofit. They must show, like anyone else, that their use is a fair use under the established tests—a very narrow and limited exception to copyright infringement.
January 1, 2013 was a date long-feared by the recording industry. It marked the 35-year anniversary of the effective date of the Copyright Act of 1976, which grants authors of works an absolute right to terminate a transfer of copyright thirty-five years after the date of transfer.
The League of European Research Universities, LERU, has attacked a European Parliament committee for weakening a copyright reform statement, which had earlier clarified academics’ rights to data-mine and publish extracts from copyright protected material.
Labor frontbencher Ed Husic has hit out at the Abbott government's controversial anti-piracy website-blocking bill despite his party's support of it, arguing it favours the interests of rights holders over consumers.
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