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First off today, the Associated Press reports that the founder of the Kino.to film download site, identified only as Dirk B., has been sentenced to four years and six months in prison for criminal copyright infringement in his native Germany. Dirk B. was accused of some 1.1 million breaches of copyright law for his part in running the site and also must pay €3.7 million ($4.6 million) in back taxes. Four others involved in the site were also sentenced to about three years in prison each.
Next up today, Scott Hervey of IP Law Blog writes that the Ninth Circuit has upheld a lower court ruling against East Coast Foods in its case against ASCAP. ASCAP, which collects royalties on behalf of publishers and composers for music performed publicly, sued East Coast Foods alleging that the company, in at least one of its Roscoe’s House of Chicken and Waffles locations the restaurant and an attached lounge, played music without paying for a license. However, what makes the case unique is that, in addition to the business being found liable, the owner of East Coast Foods, Herbert Hudson, was also found personally liable. Both Hudson and his company were ordered to pay $4,500 in statutory damages for each of the eight songs sued for, totaling $36,000 and also some $162,728.22 in attorney’s fees and costs.
Finally today, David Kravets from Wired writes that retired New York Federal judge Abraham David Sofaer has been helping the Electronic Frontier Foundation in its efforts to represent former Megaupload users who had their data seized when the site was shuttered in January. Kravets is especially concerned that the government feels it has no obligation to assist users in getting their legitimate data back from the site and is donating his legal services to the EFF to help them argue on behalf of former Megaupload users.
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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