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First off today, The Canadian Press reports that an appeals court in Canada has ordered TV provider Bell ExpressVu to pay $137 million to Quebecor subsidiaries Videotron and TVA over Bell ExpressVu’s failure to prevent piracy of their signals.
Bell ExpressVu and Videotron are competitors, Bell ExpressVu is a satellite TV provider and Videotron is a cable provider. According to the lawsuit, Bell ExpressVu, which is a subsidiary of Bell Canada, failed to take adequate steps to protect their signal from piracy, resulting in customers obtaining the signal for free and not paying for Videotron or other cable service.
The award includes some $82.3 million in damages to Videotron and $404,000 to TVA. The rest of the money owed is interest assigned by the court.
Next up today, Stuff reports that New Zealand courts have freed up some $700,000 ($500,000 USD) of Kim Dotcom’s cash to enable him to pay some of his legal expenses in his ongoing battle over the shuttered cyberlocker site Megaupload.
Dotcom was arrested in January 2012 over the site and widespread piracy that was on it. He has since been fighting extradition to the United States but, in the meantime, nearly all of his assets have been seized by the government and are being held pending the outcome of criminal and civil matters against him.
Though Dotcom and his family have been granted an allowance of $20,000 ($15,000 USD) per month, Dotcom has said that is not enough, especially with his ongoing legal bills. He cited legal bills in excess of over $4 million ($2.9 million USD). The freed up money should help him pay some of his legal bills but he was criticized by the court for not moving out of his mansion, which costs an estimated $1 million ($725,000 USD) per year to live in.
Finally today, Charlie Warzel at BuzzFeed writes that Twitter has updated its policies to bar the posting of “intimate photos or videos that were taken or distributed without the subject’s consent.” This includes revenge and other non-consensual pornography.
The policy falls in line with Reddit and other sites that have been instituting policies to protect users against nude or sexual images being posted on sites without their permission. This goes beyond the requirements of the Digital Millennium Copyright Act (DMCA), which only requires hosts to remove content if it is infringing copyright, which much revenge porn is not.
The new policy is in effect immediately and they also modified their policy on threats and abuse to include the anti-revenge porn copy.
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.