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First off today, in a move that was widely expected, the judge in the Google Book Search case has postponed the fairness hearing scheduled for early next month. The settlement, which is between Google, the Author’s Guild and various publishers, would have allowed Google to display and sell copies of out-of-print but in-copyright works on their site. This included works of those not directly involved in the lawsuit.
Also immediately after it was announced the settlement came under sharp attack from authors not wishing to participate, then other companies feeling it would be an unfair advantage for Google, then from other nations worried about their author’s rights and then, in recent weeks, criticisms from both the U.S. Copyright Office and Department of Justice. This prompted all involved parties to ask for a continuance on the hearing so they could rework the settlement, a continuance that has now been granted.
What this effectively means is that the settlement, as written, is likely dead and will probably go through significant readjustment before being presented again.
Next up today, two out of the three judges that make up the Pirate Bay appeal panel have come under scrutiny for potential bias.
One judge, Ulrika Ihrfelt, was previously removed from the bias investigation of the first Pirate Bay judge Tomas Norström, after it was found she was a member of several pro-copyright organizations. She faces similar allegations to Christina Boutz.
However, the more interesting case involves the planned “lay” judges (which is somewhat similar to a jury), who is an employee for Spotify, which is partly owned by the record labels. He may be barred from this case though the defense has not posted an objection, likely due to the fact he is also a programmer that co-hold a patent with the founder of uTorrent and has ties with a technical university that has strong support for Sweden’s Pirate Party.
The appeals court has two weeks to weeks set aside in November to hear the appeal in The Pirate Bay case.
Finally today, the trial between Apple and rapper Eminem’s publisher started yesterday and, in the opening arguments alone, there was already a revelation.
According to Eight Mile Style LLC, Eminem’s publisher, Apple did not have adequate permission to make available 93 of the artist’s tracks for download. According to Eight Mile Style, Aftermath Records, which was founded by Dr. Dre and is also a defendant in the suit, did not have clearance to offer Apple such a deal.
However, in the opening arguments it was revealed that Eminem and his publisher have been receiving royalties for their iTunes downloads, have been cashing the checks and continue to do so. This certainly puts the focus back on Eight Mile Style and how it has handled the alleged infringement and lead to accusations from Apple’s attorneys that they were attempting to both obtain their royalties and a share of Apple’s profits.
The trial is ongoing.
That’s it for the three count today. We will 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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