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First off today, we have an update on the Google Book Search “status” conference that took place yesterday. What was striking was how quickly the two sides seem to want to rescue their deal, going so far as to say that they are hoping to have a revised agreement some time in early November and a fairness hearing in either late December or early January.
This conference was originally to be part of the approval process for the settlement but, after it came under sharp criticism from many sides, including the Department of Justice, who is part of the negotiating process currently, Google, the Author’s Guild and the publishers were sent back to the drawing board.
However, there are hints that the new settlement may be more beneficial to authors than the first. The first would have allowed Google to display and sell copies out-of-print but in-copyright works in exchange for an upfront fee and a portion of revenues, but given that the parties are suggesting that there be significantly less time to approve any revisions, it is an indication that Google may be giving up additional ground to make the deal work.
Unfortunately though, we won’t know for certain until the draft of the new settlement is released later this year.
Next up today, an appeals court in Japan has overturned the conviction of Isamu Kaneko, who was fined 1.5 million yen ($17,000) for the development of the file sharing application Winny, which can be used to transfer files without exposing one’s IP address.
A lower court had convicted Kaneko of assisting users to infringe copyright. However, that conviction has been overturned, in stark contrast to ongoing litigation in the U.S., Sweden and elsewhere, that has found file sharing software developers responsible in many cases.
It is unclear if the decision is being appealed further.
Finally today, The Pirate Bay is back online and at their new home. They’ve reportedly moved their servers to Netherlands, back from a failed attempt to relocate to Ukraine, where their new host operates out of an old NATO nuclear bunker designed to survive nuclear, biological and even electromagnetic attacks.
Though it is unclear whether The Pirate Bay is actually hosted within the bunker or just using the host’s services, it is clear that the site is live and operating.
The question now is how will The Pirate Bay’s nemesis, the Dutch anti-piracy outfit BREIN, respond and how the host will stand up to the inevitable legal challenges.
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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