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First off today, John Ribeiro at PC World reports that a U.S. federal court has ruled against the file hosting service Hotfile, siding instead with the Motion Picture Association of American in ruling that the company is liable for infringements carried out via its service.
The full decision has not been released as confidential parts need to be redacted, but the MPAA sued Hotfile alleging that it policy of paid incentives to those who upload popular content meant it played an active role in encouraging infringement and, as such, was not eligible for protection under the Digital Millennium Copyright Act, which normally protects hosts from infringements committed by users.
In addition to Hotfile the company, the court also found Hotfile’s principal, Anton Titov, personally liable for the infringement. the full decision is expected to be made publicly available in about two weeks.
Next up today, DL Cade at PetaPixel reports that photographer Bryan Humphrey is accusing the Syfy Channel and its parent company NBC Universal of copyright infringement as, according to him, the Syfy Channel used some 8 photographs he took in a new TV series named “Heroes of Cosplay”.
The show, which features prominent cosplayers, who make elaborate costumes based on fictional characters, competing in a competition to see who is the best in their field. Humphrey routinely photographs cosplayers and at least some of his photographs appear to have been used in the show without his permission.
Humphrey, through his “business advocate” BGZ Studios, sent NBC Universal an invoice for nearly $30,000 to license the images. NBC Universal responded by saying that the cosplayers in the show had listed themselves a co-authors in the photos, giving them the right to license them. Humphrey has said he is prepared to sue but is waiting for a September 24th deadline to pass.
Finally today, Chris Welch at The Verge reports that former Intellectual Property Enforcement Coordinator (commonly referred to as the “Copyright Czar” or “IP Czar”), Victoria Espinel, has announced her new position: She will be taking over as the new president and CEO of the Software Alliance (BSA).
The BSA is a lobbying organization that represents the interests of software companies such as Microsoft, Apple, Oracle and Intel. However, Espinel will be barred from lobbying herself due to an ethics pledge she signed upon accepting the “Copyright Czar” position. That pledge bars her from doing any lobbying for two years after leaving.
At this time, Espinel’s former office is still vacant, awaiting an appointment from President Obama.
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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