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First off today, photographer Daniel Morel has won a key victory against the wire service the AFP and, along the way, a victory for those who post images on Twitter. The AFP had used one of Morel’s photo of Haiti earthquake in a story. After Morel claimed sued for copyright infringement, the AFP claimed that Morel had relinquished rights in the photo after sharing it on TwitPic. However, the court shot down that argument saying that posting via Twitter is not the same as relinquishing ownership. This paves the way for Morel’s lawsuit to continue and lets other Twitter users breathe a sigh of relief.
Despite setbacks in late 2010 for other plaintiffs, the porn industry seems to be rolling out more lawsuits than ever with various smaller companies combining to file some 13,000 estimated lawsuits against “Doe” defendants all over the country. A similar lawsuit by the Adult Copyright Group targeting some 7,000 Does was thrown out for lack of enjoinder, meaning that there wasn’t sufficient reason to lump the lawsuits together. However, the new cases are arguing that the act of sharing files via P2P is a cooperative effort deserving of such enjoinder. Without it, all the lawsuits would have to be filed separately, greatly increasing the time and expense.
Finally today, January 1 marked Public Domain Day, the day in which expiring works lapse into the public domain. However, in the U.S. no works were to lapse into the public domain domain the the Center for the Study of the Public Domain instead ran a list of the titles that would have entered the public domain on January 1 2011 if it had not been for the Copyright Act of 1978. This year those works included “The Lord of the Flies”, “Horton Hears a Who” and “Creature from the Black Lagoon” among many others.
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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