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First off today, Victoria Espinel has been confirmed by the U.S. Senate to be the country’s first copyright czar. She is the first person to fill that position, created in the PRO-IP act, which was passed in 2008 under the Bush administration, and was also Obama’s first choice for the job.
Espinel was a fairly non-controversial choice, well-respected by both copyright industry heads and copyright reform groups as a balanced candidate for the job. She previously served as an advisor on intellectual property issues to the staff of the Senate Judiciary Committee, Senate Finance Committee, House Judiciary Committee and House Ways and Means Committee according to the article.
Her confirmation had been widely expected and is now official.
Next up today, a French court has ordered Coyote Systems, makers of “speed alert” GPS systems that notify users when they are traveling too fast and speed cameras are nearby, to pay rival manufacturer GPS Prevent €75,000 for copying and selling a database owned by the company to a third party.
What is interesting about the case is how GPS Prevent proved its arguments, namely by including three false GPS coordinates for cameras that didn’t exist, a copyright easter egg of sorts.
The third party company was not held liable for any infringement and the ruling does not affect any of Coyote’s current products.
Finally today, The Daily Mail seems to have kicked up some controversy after an article printed regarding “Moneyfacing”, which is where half-folded bank notes are placed in front of real faces and photographed, used images from Flickr user Thom Shannon’s profile without his permission and without attribution.
Shannon posted a comment to the article objecting to his photos use but Daily Mail has not taken any action. Shannon has reuploaded his images to now include a watermark, which provides a URL to the original source.
Six of the nine demonstration images used in the Daily Mail article are Shannon’s and all are available either at or near full-size. I am going to research this issue further and write a more complete article next week.
Hat tip: ap4a (Thanks!)
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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