3 Count: Pirate Penalty

3 Count: Pirate Penalty Image

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1: Google Takes Small Step against Online Piracy

First off today, Spandas Lui of ZDNet reports that, late Friday, Google announced that soon it will begin weighting the number of copyright notices a site has received in its ranking. The penalty will affect sites with a large number of “valid” copyright notices, bumping them down in the results. However, such sites will not be removed from the index (other than the reported URLs) and may still be found through other searches. It is unclear how severe the penalty will be or when it will begin.

2: CNN Suspends Fareed Zakaria for Alleged Plagiarism

Next up today, Scott Collins at the LA Times reports that CNN and Time magazine have both suspended reporter Fareed Zakaria after a column he penned for Time plagiarized several passages from an earlier column in The New Yorker. Zakaria was both editor at large at Time and a host at CNN. Zakaria had also posted an abridged version of the column on CNN’s site, which contained much of the plagiarism. Zakaria has admitted to the plagiarism and apologized. The allegations were first raised by Tim Graham, a conservative reporter who works to expose what he sees as liberal media bias. According to CNN, Zakaria’s suspension is until a review of his work can be completed.

3: Michael Jackson Estate’s Copyright Win

Finally today, the Associated Press is reporting that the estate of Michael Jackson scored an important copyright win as a judge ruled against Howard Mann, who created the site “Michael Jackson’s Secret Vault”, which distributed and sold Michael Jackson works. Mann had claimed he had obtained the rights at bankruptcy sale years ago though the judge found there to be no evidence of such a sale. Mann had previously promised to reveal details that he felt would show Jackson’s will to be a fraud at trial. The trial will move to the damages phase though the judge acknowledges that it is unlikely Mann will be able to pay anything due to mounting debts.


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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Tune in every Wednesday evening at 5 PM ET for the live recording of the Copyright 2.0 Show or wait and get the edited version Friday right here on Plagiarism Today.

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