3 Count: Sunk

This is daily column on Plagiarism Today where the site brings you three of the days biggest, most important copyright and plagiarism news links. If you want to offer your feedback on the column, use the contact form or just follow me on Twitter at @plagiarismtoday.

1: Tenenbaum P2P trial features prophetic warnings of doom

Yesterday was day two of the Joel Tenenbaum trial, and included both opening arguments and the first witnesses.

Tenenbaum, who is being sued by various record labels for sharing songs over p2p networks had already suffered a serious blow to his defense as the judge barred his lawyers from raising the fair use issue, which was his primary defense.

However, both sides made spirited statements during their opening arguments. Defense attorney Charles Nesson even tore apart a visual aid to symbolize the breaking apart of a file into its smaller parts, something that, according to his statement, is done over file sharing networks.

With the fair use defense gone, we have little clue what Tenenbaum’s attorneys will argue as he has already admitted to the file sharing and there is a slew of evidence pointing to the fact as well. Nesson did mention that Tenenbaum, who is in his twenties, is part of a digital generation that should not be punished for taking advantage of free music when it was the only option and continuing to do so when legal alternatives became available.

The record labels also called their first three witnesses, Sony Music Entertainment Deputy General Counsel Wade Leak, Mark Matteo of Cox Communications’ security department, Chris Connelly of MediaSentry, the company that originally found and recorded Tenenbaum’s file sharing, and Joel Tenenbaum’s own father, who testified that he had warned his son about file sharing, seen him engaging in the behavior and heard him listening to at least one of the 30 songs involved in the suit.

Day three, today, should have more witnesses from the record labels and the labels hope to wrap up their case by tomorrow morning, leaving only a day for the defense before the jury is to get its instructions on Friday.

2: Pirate Bay Sale Dead in the Water

Next up, it appears that The Pirate Bay sale, which was announced last month, may not be happening after all. Global Gaming Factory (GGF), which had proposed to buy the site for approximately $7.8 million, appears to be struggling to raise the funds to complete the sale.

Already Wayne Rosso, the former CEO of Grokster, who was tapped to head the new venture, has quit his job saying he does not wish to further damage his reputation. To add more gloom the current owners of The Pirate Bay owners have given GGF one more week to secure the funds to make the purchase happen.

This leaves the future of the site, which has taken a huge hit following the announcement of the sale, up in the air.

3: Apple: Jailbreaking Could Knock out Transmission Towers

Finally today, Apple, in a filing with the U.S. Copyright Office, said that jailbreaking iPhones could, potentially crash cell phone towers or allow users to make phone calls without paying for them. According to the company, jailbreaking an iPhone, which allows its owner to port it to a different carrier or install non-approved applications, makes it possible for the user to manipulate the phone in ways that could be dangerous to the cell phone networks.

Apple made the filing earlier this month in a rebuttal to the Electronic Frontier Foundation, which has asked the Copyright Office to legalize jailbreaking, thus creating an exemption in the Digital Millennium Copyright Act, on the grounds that it harms competition and user choice.

The Copyright Office is expected to rule on this, as well as other exemptions, later this year.


That’s it for the three count today, we’ll be back tomorrow with three more copyright links. If you have a link that you want to suggest a link for the column or have any proposals to make it better. Feel free to leave a comment or send me an email. I hope to hear from you.

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