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First off today, Don Jeffrey at Bloomberg reports that Vimeo is hoping to end its long-running case against Vivendi and is asking the judge to dismiss it and head off a potential jury trial.
Vivendi sued Vimeo in 2009 alleging that the video sharing site induced infringement by encouraging users to upload videos of them lip synching to popular songs, among other allegations. Vimeo won some earlier court decisions saying that it was protected under the Digital Millennium Copyright Act but, after a similar case involving YouTube got sent back down to the lower court for a trial, so was this one.
Vivendi claims that Vimeo had “red flag” knowledge of infringements and that DMCA takedowns should not have been necessary. Vimeo, on the other hand, claims to have complied with the DMCA and removed all videos they received notices regarding. If the judge does not dismiss the suit, a jury trial is likely.
Next up today Thomas O’Toole at Bloomberg BNA reports that the Fourth Circuit Court of Appeals has ruled that the E-Sign Act, which paved the way for electronic signatures to be used instead of physical ones, also applies to copyright transfers, opening the door to electronic transfers of copyright.
Under copyright law, transfers of copyright have to be done in writing. However, it was unclear if electronic transfers counted as written.
Though lower courts have affirmed that copyrights can be transferred electronically and the practice is fairly common online, this is the one of the first times a circuit court has ruled on the matter.
Finally today, Stuart Dredge at The Guardian reports that musician Thom Yorke, best known as the frontman for Radiohead, has thrown his support behind a new streaming service, Soundhalo, announcing a deal with them for his band Atoms for Peace just days after he launched a very public attack against Spotify and pulled his music off of that service.
Soundhalo is not a music streaming service like Spotify, but rather, enables musicians to sell and stream video from live performances. For example, for the entire set from both of Atoms for Peace’s upcoming shows at London’s Roundhouse will cost ¬£9.99 ($15), less than a quarter of the price of a ticket to one of the shows.
The timing of the announcement, however, has been called into question as Yorke is still in an ongoing war of words with Spotify and other streaming services over what he says are low payouts to artists.
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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