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First off today, David Meyer at ZDNet reports that, in UK, the ISP O2 has announced it has turned over the identity of some 1,000 suspected file sharers to the pornographer Ben Dover. Ben Dover had originally sought and won access to 9,000 of 02’s customers but, following a challenge from Customer Focus, a watchdog organization, that number was reduced to “just under 1,000”.
Ben Dover is expected to send two letters to those it received the information on, the first will invite the person to admit infringement without specifying a settlement fee and the second will begin the negotiation process. This is a revision from the original letter, which the court shot down, that would have aimed for a flat fee of £700 per case.
Next up today, Andrew Albanese of Publishers Weekly writes that the Authors Guild has begun its appeal of the recent HathiTrust ruling and is aiming to challenge nearly everything in it. Hathitrust was an organization founded by several universities that aimed at using scanned copies of books, created by Google, and made the books searchable in a database as well as available for reading by the visually impaired. The Authors Guild sued but had the case tossed by the lower court.
The Authors Guild has now appealed the ruling and is challenging nearly all of the judge’s findings, including whether the orphan works issue was moot due to the works not being made available, whether or not the book digitization/search was a fair use, whether the Authors Guild has standing in the case and whether making the books available to the disabled was also a fair use. The appeal is before the Second Circuit, which will decide whether or not to take it on.
Finally today, David Wright, Ben Newman and Lauren Effron of ABC News report that yoga instructor Bikram Choudhury has settled his lawsuit with his former student and protégé Greg Gumucio. Choudhury is one of the best-known yoga instructors in the world and considered a pioneer of “hot yoga”. He sued Gumucio saying that Gumucio was using Choudhury’s copyright “Bikram Yoga”, which is a series of 26 poses.
The case was set to determine whether or not yoga could be copyrighted at all. The U.S. Copyright Office seemed receptive to Gumucio’s arguments that it couldn’t be, saying that, while choreography can be copyrighted, those rules may not apply to yoga and other movements that have medical benefits. In the settlement, Gumucio agreed to stop teaching Choudhury’s routine and Choudhury has agreed to drop the lawsuit.
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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