3 Count: Beatles Remix

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1: Pirate Bay challenging Dutch court ruling

First off today, The Pirate Bay, despite having suffered some pretty serious blows in recent months, appears to still be in fighting spirit. They have decided to challenge the Dutch anti-piracy group BREIN’s recent win in Dutch court, which ordered The Pirate Bay to cut off access to Dutch users or face a daily fine.

Well, the deadline for The Pirate Bay to disable access to the Netherlands has passed and it has had no effect. The Pirate Bay has announced that they do plan on appealing the verdict and BREIN has said that they will not seek any fines until August 27th, the date of the proposed sale of The Pirate Bay to Global Gaming Factory.

According to BREIN, it will also apply the ban to GGF should the buyout go through.

2: Beatles Copyrights in McCartney’s (distant) Sights

It’s one of the best-known copyright sagas. The Beatles, toward the end of the 60s, effectively lost control over the licensing of their music due to a series of buyouts and mergers. Michael Jackson eventually bought the rights to the music in 1985 and formed a joint venture with Sony called Sony/ATV Publishing to license the music. Though McCartney and John Lennon both received royalties as the songwriters, they were denied any revenue from the actual licensing.

However, in 9 years McCartney may be able to start recapturing the publishing share of the music in just nine years. The reason is that the Copyright Act of 1978 allows songrwriters to recapture it 56 years (two 28-year terms) after publicaiton. This means Beatles songs recorded in 1962 will be eligible for reversion in 2018 while and those recorded in 1970 will be eligible in 2026.

Under the act, John Lennon’s heirs, due to his untimely death, were eligible for reversion as early as 1990 but, due to a deal with Lennon’s widow, Yoko Ono, that did not happen. It remains to be see what McCartney will do when presented with this option but it is common lore in copyright circles that he was very displeased his then-friend purchased the rights to his own music.

3: Studios want copyright justice ‘streamlined’

FInally today, in New Zealand, Federation Against Copyright Theft (FACT), a group which represents movie studions in the country) is expressing concern about the revised draft of section 92a, which is better known as New Zealand’s “Three Strikes” law.

The original version of the law, which was scuttled after mass protests, would have required ISPs to disconnect alleged file sharers after receiving three notices. The more recent version, however, requires file sharers to go before a tribunal, which can then disconnect them or impose fines.

However, FACT is concerned that the process could be very expensive for the studios, who are preparing to file 1000s of complaints. They are wondering how they will be able to litigate all of the cases and if the system will be practical for them or the government. They say they are not opposed to a judicial solution, if it can be adequately “streamlined”.

The period for comments on the proposal has passed and all we can do now is wait and see what comes of the law itself.


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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