3 Count: Pyrrhic Victory

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1: Copyright Law Needs Overhaul to Meet Internet Needs, Says EU Lawmaker

First off today, Loek Essers at PCWorld reports that, Julia Reda, the European Parliament’s rapporteur for the Legal Affairs Committee presented her proposal for EU-wide copyright reform, calling for greater harmonization among the nations on matters of copyright.

Among the proposed changes are eliminating the legal protections around DRM when used to protect public domain or other non-copyrighted works and require companies using DRM to publish the source code. She also wants to clarify EU law to state that hyperlinking is not an infringement and also wants to harmonize the copyright terms in the bloc, turning to the Berne Convention to set those terms.

For most works, that would be the life of the author plus 50 years though cinematograpic works the protection would be 50 years after the film was made public and photographs would only be protected for 25 years. Reda, who is also a member of the German Pirate Party, says that the ultimate goal of the proposal is streamlining copyright in the EU and making it a single market for digital goods.

2: Beastie Boys Lawyers: $1.7M Jury Award in Monster Energy Case Doesn’t Cover $2.4M Lega Bills

Next up today, the Associated Press reports that The Beastie Boys are asking the court to force Monster Energy Drink to pay nearly $2.4 million in legal fees on top of an an already-awarded $1.7 million in damages.

The surviving members of the group sued Monster Energy after the drink company used a mashup of Beastie Boys songs to promote a sporting event they were putting on. Monster was found liable by a jury, which awarded the band $1.7 million in damages. However, the band now says that Monster’s refusal to negotate and settle the case, even after the trial, has led to nearly $2.4 million in legal bills, an amount that could easily dwarf their award.

Calling the trial victory a “Pyrrhic victory” without further assistance. They noted that the band and Monster were often very far apart in early negotiations, with the band wanting $1.65 million and Monster never offering to settle for more than $250,000.

3: U.S. Film Group Says It Sued Xunlei Unit for Copyright

Finally today, Bloomberg News is reporting that the members of the Motion Picture Association of America (MPAA) have filed a lawsuit against Xunlei Networking Technologies Co., a Chinese company that operates video-streaming and pay-per-view services.

Back in June, the two sides had agreed to cooperate on promoting legitimate access to U.S. TV and film content in the country. However, it seems that relationship has broken down as they have now filed suit, citing unspecified copyright infringements.

The lawsuit is seeking damage, a stop to the infringement and a public apology in addition to litigation costs.


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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