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First off today, Susie Ochs at PC World reports that Pandora has announced it will purchase key assets from the music streaming service Rdio with the aim of opening its own on-demand music streaming service in 2016.
Pandora, currently, is an Internet radio providers that creates stations tailored to user taste. Rdio is an on-demand service, akin to Spotify, where users can select the tracks they want to play. However, Rdio never found the popularity of its competitors and was reportedly losing millions of dollars per month.
Pandora has announced it is buying the company’s technology and intellectual property for $75 million. However, that deal does not include the whole company, which has entered into chapter 11 bankruptcy, or its agreements with the record labels as those are non-transferrable. Nonetheless, Pandora has said it hopes to have launched an on-demand service by the end of 2016, building on Rdio’s technology.
Next up today, The Japan News is reporting that, in Japan, the Agency for Cultural Affairs is looking to strengthen the nation’s copyright laws in the wake of the signing of the Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP) trade deal, which calls for all signatories to meet minimum standards for copyright protection.
The TPP is a trade deal negotiated and signed by 12 Pacific rim nations including Japan, the United States, Australia, New Zealand and Canada. The wide-ranging deal was signed earlier this year though nations have not implemented the deal at this time. It has been controversial both due to its secrecy and concerns that it would alter intellectual property laws significantly.
Though the United States doesn’t have to make significant changes to its laws to comply, Japan will have to extend its copyright term from life of the author plus 50 years to plus 70 years. The law will also have to be altered to allow Japanese authorities to investigate copyright infringement and bring charges without involvement by copyright holders. The law will also have to allow rightsholders to seek statutory damages in civil cases.
Finally today Ernesto at Torrentfreak writes that The Motion Picture Association of America (MPAA) has told the court that it wants $10 million in damages from the movie streaming site MovieTube, which is half of the damages it was capable of seeking.
Movietube was a series of movie streaming sites that gave viewers easy access to pirated films. The sites shuttered shortly after the lawsuit though the MPAA contends the creators have launched new projects. In the meantime, the owners of MovieTube, identified in the lawsuit as “John Doe” have not appeared in court or made any filings, prompting the court to enter a default judgment against them.
The MPAA, in addition to a broad injunction is also asking the court for statutory damages totally $10.5 million. The MPAA originally sued over 140 films and is asking for $75,000 per movie. Under copyright law, the maximum statutory damages for willful infringement is $150,000 per work, meaning the MPAA is asking for just half of the legal maximum.
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.