3 Count: Master of Business

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1: Staffer Axed by Republican Group Over Retracted Copyright-Reform Memo

First off today, Timothy Lee at Ars Technica reports that the Republican Study Committee (RSC) has dismissed a staffer, Derek Khanna, who had previously published a controversial memo regarding copyright reform on the RSC site. Khanna published the memo, allegedly without approval from the RSC, and in it advocated drastic reforms to copyright law including a drastic reduction in copyright terms and damages.

The memo was widely approved by members in tech circles but was derided by those in the content industries. According to incoming RSC chairman Steve Scalise, he was approached by several members of the house who were upset about the memo and asked that Khanna not be retained next term, which he has agreed to do. Khanna had no comment on the matter.

2: Hollywood’s Total Piracy Awareness Program Set for January Launch

Next up today, David Kravets at Wired reports that Chris Dodd, the former Senator and current head of the MPAA, announced at a keynote at the 2012 Content Protection Summit that the copyright alert system, often called the six-strikes system, will roll out in the US in January.

The system, which is a cooperative effort between ISPs and copyright holders, was scheduled to roll out in 2011 but has been pushed back several times, the latest deadline being on Nov. 28th. That deadline was missed, according to the system’s administrators, because Hurricane Sandy hampered the testing schedule.

The system will send out alerts and warnings to suspected copyright infringers and, after a certain number of “strikes” will take action including blocking certain sites and throttling connection speed.

3: Metallica Joins Spotify, Buries the Hatchet with Sean Parker

Finally today, Greg Sandoval at CNet reports that Metallica has changed course and is allowing its music to appear and be streamed in Spotify. The band, which is still famous for suing Napster in the early 2000s, also appeared on stage with Sean Parker, Napster’s founder and a member of Spotify’s board of directors.

According to Metallica, they recently obtained control over their master recordings and are now distributing their music through their own label, Blackened Records. The decision to license their music to Spotify followed that move. Spotify is hoping that the move will help improve relationships with other artists, many of whom believe the service does not pay adequately for streams.


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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