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First off today, David Kravets at Ars Technica reports that the Recording Industry Association of America, the British Recorded Music Industry and other recorded music industry representatives have filed a lawsuit against the site YouTube-mp3.org, a stream ripper site that converts YouTube videos into MP3 files for download.
The lawsuit, filed in Los Angeles, claims that the site has enabled “enormous” amounts of copyright infringement by circumventing technical measures to prevent copying and facilitating direct copyright infringement by users. The plaintiffs also claim that the site earns revenue from advertising, making the infringement a for-profit venture.
The lawsuit comes just weeks after a survey found that 50 percent of people between 16 and 24 use stream rippers. The lawsuit claims that YouTube-mp3 is responsible for upwards of 40% of all unlawful stream-ripping from YouTube. The lawsuit is seeking $150,000 per infringement and an injunction against the site.
Next up today, The Canadian Press reports that Montreal designer Pier-Luk Bouthillier says he received a notice informing him that a T-shirt he was selling featuring drawings of various Montreal landmarks was a copyright infringement of Montreal’s Olympic Stadium and a popular sculpture in the city.
The notice was sent by SODRAC, a society that represents authors, composers, music publishers and artists. They demanded that he stop producing the shirts, which included outlines of some of Montreal’s most iconic shapes, including the Olympic Stadium as well as the Man, Three Disks sculpture.
A representative for SODRAC confirmed that the letter was sent out and said that the shirt infringed the rights of both the architect of the stadium and the artist behind the sculpture. He added that, while there is an exception that allows public works to be drawn, painted, photographed or filmed, they do not believe it extends to reproducing the works for commercial purposes. Bouthillier said he is unsure how he will respond.
Finally today, Jed Whitaker at Destructoid reports that PM Studios, the company behind the Playstation Vita game Superbeat Xonic, dropped in a on a subreddits that were discussing how to pirate their game and, rather than issuing legal threats, thanked the pirates for their interest and offered them a discount in the Playstation Store.
After noticing that users were sharing tips on how to pirate the game on at least two subreddits, the developers dropped in and posted a note, offering a 60% discount on the game in the Playstation Store and encouraging pirates to become paying customers. At least some in the threat said they did so.
Playstation Vita piracy became an issue with the hacking of the device’s firmware. Vita’s running firmware 3.60 or below are subject to the hack and can run any software the owner directs, including pirated software. The latest version of the firmware, 3.61, fixes that issue.
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.