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First off today, Warner Brothers, in its ongoing dispute against file sharing service Hotfile, has admitted that it made mistakes and requested removal of files that it did not hold copyright to. Hotfile had given Warner special access to its site so it could remove infringing files directly but, according to Hotfile, Warner repeatedly misused that ability to remove files it didn’t own, including some open source applications. Warner says that they did make mistakes but that it would be impossible to check every file and that they rely on automated services that, sometimes, make errors. Warner has asked the judge to dismiss Hotfile’s claims against them.
Next up today, Belgian music rights group Sabam is seeking some 3.4% of the subscriber fees from ISPs in the country for their part in transmitting pirated music. According to Sabam, this would not legalize piracy per se, but rather merely prevent the ISPs from being held liable for their role. ISPs in the country say that this is unfortunate as they are currently working to build legal alternatives to piracy. It remains unclear if Belgian copyright law supports such a broad interpretation.
Finally today, Media artist Kazuhiko Hachiya has warned that, if Japan were to join the Trans-Pacific Partnership Agreement (TPP), a wide-ranging trade agreement already signed between the U.S., Australia and other nations bordering the Pacific Ocean, that the copyright changes could impact cosplayers. The law would enable police to enforce copyright without a copyright holder complaint, which is a current requirement of the law. Cosplayers, who create elaborate costumes to dress as characters in their favorite movies, shows, games and comics, are often creative derivative works based on those characters and could, theoretically, be stopped. Japan’s Prime Minister is expected to announce today if the nation will join TPP talks.
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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