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First off today, the MPAA, on behalf of member studios, has filed suit against Silicon Valley startup Zediva, claiming that the music streaming service is violating the copyright of the movies is plays. Zediva, unlike other movie streaming services, works by having users rent DVDs and DVD players, which physically exist in Zediva’s datacenter. This means Zediva legally purchases DVDs to stream and only one person is viewing a DVD at a time. According to Zediva, since no copies are being made, they are allowed to stream in this matter, no different than DVD rental service, but the MPAA claims that Zediva is an infringement and an unlawful public performance of their work.
Next up today Joel Tenebaum, who was sued in 2005 for file sharing and was found liable in a district court, has had his cases heard before the 1st Circuit Court of Appeals. At issue is the amount of damages Tenebaum should be forced to pay for his admitted file sharing, the lower court deciding he should pay $67,500. The judges on the panel asked tough questions of both sides, including getting concessions from the defendants that statutory damages are not unconstitutional on their own and asking the plaintiffs why Tenebaum should be held liable for the sharing activities of others. A decision in the case is not expected for many months.
Finally today, the European Union recently confirmed Maria Martin-Prat will be taking over the intellectual property unit at the EU. Martin-Prat most recently was working for the International Federation of the Phonographic Industry (IFPI), where she was in charge of the legal department. During her time there, she made many controversial arguments, including eliminating or strictly limiting personal copying exemptions, making her appointment one of contention for many, especially as she will be in charge of crucial treaty negotiations, including ACTA.
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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