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First off today, Colin Campbell at Polygon reports that video game maker Bethesda has ordered the removal of a still-sealed copy of their recent game, The Evil Within 2, because the seller attempted to describe the game as “new.”
The seller, Ryan Hupp, was attempting to sell the game on his Amazon Marketplace storefront. However, he received a legal threat from Bethesda’s lawyers demanding that he remove the listing. According to the letter, this was because Hupp was not an authorized reseller and he was describing the game as “new” even though it would not come with a warranty.
Hupp attempted to point out that the resale of such works is protected by the first sale doctrine in the United States but Bethesda claimed that, since the resold version came without a warranty, it was “materially different” from the original and not covered under the doctrine. Hupp has removed the game for sale, though other used copies do remain on the site.
Next up today, Robert Briel at Broadband TV News reports that the Dutch anti-piracy group BREIN secured the closure of the popular XvBMC-NL Kodi repository after sending a summons to the site’s developer and manager.
Kodi is an open source platform for set-top boxes akin to Apple TV or Fire TV. Though Kodi itself doesn’t enable piracy, repositories such as XvBMC-NL applications for Kodi that offer access to infringing material. This has led to a crackdown on such repositories in recent years, including a recent Court of Justice of the EU ruling that found that offering such apps for download could constitute copyright infringement.
It was with that judgment that BREIN approached Z, the manager of XvBC-NL, demanding that the site close. After being served with the paperwork, Z did just that, abruptly closing the repository and removing it from the internet. Z, however, did claim in a Facebook post that his work was not infringing and that none of the software on his site allowed access to infringing material.
Finally today, Andy at Torrentfreak writes that Steve Mather, a 63-year-old man from Lancashire, UK, has been given an eight-month suspended sentence for his role in a karaoke piracy ring.
In 2015, the BPI began investigating Mather after downloading several of his tracks on KickassTorrents. After confirming the tracks were infringing, they took the matter to the City of London Police Intellectual Property Crime Unit (PIPCU), which took over the investigation that eventually led to his arrest.
This led to Mather’s arrest and eventual guilty plea in the case. The court decided to hand him an eight-month suspended sentence for his role in the piracy, which included being the ringleader of the KaraokeRG karaoke piracy ring.
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.