3 Count: Google Tax

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1: German ‘Google Tax’ progresses through Bundestag

First off today, Christopher Williams and Jennifer O’Mahony at The Telegraph report that Germany’s “ancillary copyright” legislation has been paseed in that country’s Bundestag (Parliament) and has been sent out for legal review. The law would require search engines, most notably Google, to pay a licensing fee for the snippets of text it displays in search results.

The law is being heavily pushed for by newspapers but Google has attempted to rally support online against the bill. The legal committee will now make recommendations regarding the bill and the second and third votes will take place in the Plenary, a smaller, presiding organization made up of Bundestag members.

2: iiNet: copyright law hampering ISPs

Next up today, Josh Taylor at ZDNet reports that, in Australia, the ISP iiNet has submitted its opinion that current copyright law in the country is harming ISPs. As part of the nation’s review of copyright law, iiNet said that system caching is not currently legal in the country and, as a result, they are at a competitive disadvantage to US companies, where such caching is expressly legal.

According to iiNet, since over 70% of the country’s Internet traffic comes from overseas, caching could reduce their transmission overhead to just 1 percent of what it currently is. However, iiNet also warned that Australia’s negotiations in the Trans-Pacific Partnership agreement could make caching illegal again even if they are to change the law.

3: Vernon Hill’s New Book not Going over Well at TD Bank, Which Sues Him

Finally today, Vernor W. Hill II, the founder and former CEO of Commerce Bank, is being sued by his former employer over a book he published entitled “Fans!, Not Customers: How to Create Growth Companies in a No Growth World”. TD Bank, which purchased Commerce Bank in 2008, claims that the books uses portions of a manuscript he wrote while employed for them and is a work-for-hire.

Hill, through his attorney claims that this is an attempt to silence him but TD Bank claims that he signed an agreement in 2007 saying that the book was a work-for-hire. However, Hill claims that the book only uses ideas, which TD Bank does not and can not own. Hill was dismissed from his position in 2007 after a dispute with bank regulators.


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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