3 Count: Awaiting Fate

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1: Optus Awaits Its Digital Fate, Ruling Due Today

First off today, the Herald Sun reports that Australian cell network Optus is awaiting an appeals court ruling today in its case against various sports leagues and competing network Telstra. Telstra had paid both the AFL and the NRL, two sports leagues, for exclusive rights to broadcast matches over mobile networks. However, Optus introduced a service entitled “TV Now” that let users stream broadcast matches on their devices in a manner similar to a DVR. The group sued Optus and lost in the lower court, prompting an appeal. The ruling in that appeal is expected to come down to today but, no matter what the ruling is, the matter is expected to be appealed again to the country’s high court.

2: Richard O’Dwyer’s Extradition Appeal Date Set

Next up today, the BBC reports that an appeal date has been set in the extradition case of Richard O’Dwyer. The appeal, which will be held on July 30 and 31 will decide whether the 23-year-old UK native can be extradited to the U.S. on grounds of criminal copyright infringement. O’Dwyer ran the site TVShack, which posed links to streaming versions of popular TV shows. Linking to copyright infringing material is not a criminal offense in the UK but it can be on the U.S. However, according to O’Dwyer’s attorneys, that fact prohibits him from being extradited. If he is exrtradited, O’Dwyer faces up to five years in prison.

3: ISPs Still Have to Talk About Copyright

Finally today, Business Spectator reports that ISPs in Australia, fresh off their victory in the iiNet case, still have to worry about copyright issue and talk about them. iiNet had been sued by a group of copyright holders for allegedly enabling and encouraging infringement. However, the High Court ruled last week that iiNet had no responsibilities to prevent piracy, prompting threats of legislation from copyright holders. However, it seems the two sides are discussing somewhat the possibility of a three strikes system in the nation, with rightsholders favoring a voluntary one, such as what is being implemented in the U.S. but ISPs want one similar to what is in France, where government is the mediator. Experts worry that, if ISPs don’t come to the table now, legislation could pass that is much worse for them and their businesses.


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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