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First off today, for reasons not completely clear, The Pirate Bay admins have decided not to appeal a Dutch judgment requiring them to remove certain infringing torrents and block access to Dutch users. This comes one month after a similar ruling was handed down against Mininova, which forced the site to go “legit” and limit its torrent activity to those uploaded by users.
However, this does not mean that The Pirate Bay will meet the same fate as enforcement may prove difficult in this case. Not only does BREIN nor even The Pirate Bay’s own attorneys know where they are located right now, thus why BREIN notified them of the ruling via Twitter, but the three men sued claim to no longer operate the site.
The ruling gives The Pirate Bay a deadline of March 1, 2010 to remove the infringing torrents, list to be provided by BREIN, so we will have to wait and see what comes of it.
Next up today, Yahoo! may have stepped into the Streisand Effect. The company has filed a DMCA takedown notice against Cryptome, saying that the site’s posting of their 17-page data retention policy, which outlines what user data is retained, for how long and how much the government is charged for access to it when required, is an infringement of their copyright.
Cryptome responded saying that they could not find “a grant of copyright” from the Copyright Office for the document. However, this is a clear misunderstanding of U.S. Copyright law as no such “grant” is required for any purpose other than suing and collecting statutory damages. Yahoo! counsel responded, calling the delay “unwarranted”.
But even though Yahoo! may have the right to demand such removal, what is less clear is if it is a wise move. Other ISPs on the site have taken no such action and the move seems to have only drawn more attention to Yahoo!’s practices in this area.
Cryptome is yet to respond to Yahoo!’s latest letter, which is dated December 3rd.
Finally today, Scotty Greenwood, the executive-director of the Washington-based Canadian American Business Council, has an interesting theory that connects sewage pipes and copyright policy, at least in terms of trade agreements.
Part of President Obama’s $800 billion stimulus package included a controversial “Buy American” clause that required goods and services to be purchased from within the country when stimulus money was spent. This has been a major headache for Canada, the U.S.’ largest trading partner, and has even resulted in sewer pipes made in Canada being ripped out of the ground to be replaced by U.S.-made ones.
However, Greenwood thinks that the entire matter can be resolved “tomorrow” if Canada passes copyright reform that grants more protection to copyright holders, especially U.S.-based industries. Canada was recently added to a blacklist of countries with lax laws preventing the piracy. He thinks that, with real copyright reform, the U.S. may be willing to negotiate on its Buy American rules.
Greenwood, however, does not represent his counsel or anyone else in saying that. Still, his opinion does carry clout with many in the field. However, with the Canadian Parliament due to recess shortly, no new copyright legislation seems imminent.
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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