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First off today, Eriq Gardner at The Hollywood Reporter Esquire reports that the Vimeo case is likely heading to the Second Circuit Court of Appeals, whose ruling could directly impact user-generated content sites and how they are protected under the Digital Millennium Copyright Act (DMCA).
Vimeo, a streaming video site, was sued by various record labels alleging that it encouraged and hosted videos that used their music in an unlicensed and infringing way. Vimeo claimed protection under the DMCA Safe Harbor provisions, which generally protect hosts from submissions by their users, but the labels claimed that had active knowledge and even encouraged the infringement, thus removing those protections.
The lower court judge looked at some 199 videos and has ruled in favor of Vimeo in 153 of them, in favor of the labels for 20 of them and is holding off on judgment for the rest. The judge has also ruled that “lip dub” videos are not necessarily fair uses and has also authorized an interlocutory appeal on these issues, meaning that Vimeo is free to appeal to the Second Circuit (and likely will) on the issue of whether a service provider obtains “red flag” infringement knowledge after viewing an infringing video. This could have far-reaching implications for other hosts, including YouTube and Facebook.
Next up today, Ira Tenowitz at The Wrap reports that the Supreme Court will get its first chance to decide whether it will hear the Aereo case in just one week, on January 10.
Aereo is a TV streaming service that uses a series of tiny antennas to capture over-the-air television and transmit it to users over the Internet. Aereo was sued by the broadcasters, who claim that Aereo was illegally rebroadcasting their signal, but so far the courts have refused to issue an injunction against the company and the Second Circuit Court of Appeals also found in Aereo’s favor, prompting the appeal to the Supreme Court.
Aereo, which is also being sued in other jurisdictions as well, has said it supports the Supreme Court taking up the case and has filed a petition encouraging it to do so. However, a ruling involving an Aereo competitor, FilmOn, is due in the Ninth Circuit soon. The lower court there found against FilmOn, creating a possible circuit split and making it so that the Supreme Court will be more interested in the case.
Finally today, in another post from Eriq Gardner at The Hollywood Reporter Esquire, rapper Rick Ross is suing LMFAO alleging that the latter’s 2010 song “Party Rock Anthem” is an infringement of his famous song “Hustlin’, which was released in 2006.
Ross claims that LMFAO’s use o the line “Everyday I’m shufflin'” in the chorus of its song is an infringement of his lyric, “Everyday I’m Hustlin'”.
Ross’ attorneys say that LMFAO have ignored repeated warnings about the alleged infringement and, as such, Ross is now seeking an injunction and maximum statutory damages.
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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