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First off today, Eriq Gardner at Billboard reports that Marvin Gaye’s children have hit back in the “Blurred Lines” lawsuit and have included a mashup of the hit song with Gaye’s “Got to Give it Up” to prove that “Blurred Lines” is an infringement of it.
Robin Thicke, the musician behind “Blurred Lines” filed a preemptive lawsuit against the Gaye estate after they accused him of infringing Gaye’s work with it. Thicke recently filed a motion of declaratory judgment saying that there were no copyrightable overlaps between the songs and that the Gaye estate simply “smelled money”.
The Gaye estate filed counterclaims in October of last year and have now filed their own motion for summary judgment, including statements made by Thicke that says he envisioned himself as Gaye when recording the song, statements from two musicologists describing similarities between the songs and a mashup that they say shows how similar the two works are. The estate also attempts to shoot down claims of prior art saying that they aren’t similar enough to either song to be relevant. A trial is currently scheduled for February 2015.
Next up today, Ernesto at Torrentfreak writes that Grande Communications, a Texas-based ISP, is going to court to battle a subpoena from Rightscorp, a copyright protection firm that had demanded the company identify the individuals behind some 30,000 pairs of IP address and timestamps that are suspected of piracy.
Rightscorp works by monitoring BitTorrent swarms for infringing IP addresses. It then prepares a DMCA notice and sends it to the ISP. That notice usually includes a demand for a settlement, typically in the $10-$30 per infringement range, but many ISPs refuse to pass on that information. In those cases, Rightscorp obtains a DMCA subpoena, which can be obtained just by having a clerk of court sign off on it, and most ISPs comply with those.
However, Grande Communications has filed a lawsuit saying that they do not have to comply with the subpoenas as, according to them, such subpoenas are not relevant to file sharing cases as ISPs don’t meet the definition of a “service provider” under the law. A previous court case involving Verizon and the RIAA ruled in favor of the ISP, but Rightscorp feels that was a flawed ruling that other courts, including the Supreme Court, will not agree with.
Finally today, Paul Smith at Financial Review reports that the BBC has filed its comments on proposed changes to Australian copyright law and is calling on the nation and its ISPs to do more to stop piracy.
According to the BBC, some 13,000 users with Australian ISPs attempted to illegally download leaked episodes of Doctor Who and that Australia needs to take, “Effective and decisive action,” to stem the infringement problem. They go on to say that they support a graduated response system, which would punish or disconnect users who repeatedly pirate content, and also want ISPs to detect and stop suspicious use, such as heavy VPN usage.
The BBC did say that content creators need to do more to ensure that works are legitimately available in Australia and that the country should also engage in educational efforts to dissuade users from infringing.
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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