3 Count: Standing Still

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1: After Judge’s Ruling, Publishing Companies’ Digital Rights Withdrawal Anything But Clear-Cut

First off today, Ed Chrstman at Billboard reports that, following a court ruling last month that allowed four out of the five major music publishers to withdraw from BMI, a licensing agency that makes music available for public performances, those publishers have scrambled to reach stand-still agreements that maintain the status quo until new deals can be reached.

According to the ruling, the catalogs of the publishers were no longer available for licensing through BMI as of January 1st, 2014. However, publishers were largely unprepared for the mammoth task of licensing their music to streaming services, restaurants and bars and have, instead, reached short term deals to keep going while they both negotiate new agreements and also try to work BMI about possible re-inclusion.

With BMI, the labels are specifically trying to renegotiate their withdrawal notification period, which they hope will allow them to make a quicker exit later if they wish. If that fails, the publishers say they may use BMI, or its competitor ASCAP, as an administrator of their licenses but continue to negotiate their own deals.

2: Cody Foster Sends Threatening Letter to Flickr Watchdog, Alleges Copyright Violations

Next up today, Sam Levin at East Bay Express reports that the wholesale company Cody Foster has sent a threatening letter to a Flickr user that created an account scrutinizing the company’s catalog, comparing it with other products that he claims Cody Foster copied.

The letter alleges that the Flickr account violates the copyrights of Cody Foster, which said it had also reached out to a number of the other artists involved.

The Flickr user involved is now being represented by, Emily Danchuk, a founder of the Copyright Collaborative. Danchuk said in a response that, if Cody Foster moves forward with its allegations, she will seek to invalidate the copyright registrations on Cody Foster’s works, dubbing them unlawful derivatives.

3: And The Most Downloaded Torrent of 2013 is…. Completely Legal

Finally today, Ernesto at Torrentfreak writes that the most-downloaded torrent file in 2013 wasn’t an infringing download, but a legal one.

Downloaded some 8.9 million times, the most popular torrent was actually a bundle of legal tracks by Moby that were provided by the BitTorrent company, which makes and distributes the popular UTorrent client. The bundle was pre-installed with the client so any new users automatically downloaded it.

The second most shared was a bundle of videos by Epic Meal Time with 8.6 million downloads. By comparison, Bruno Mars, the most pirated musician of 2013, was downloaded an estimated 5 million times over the course of the year.


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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