3 Count: 78 RPMs

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1: Music Labels ‘Gramophone’ Copyright Lawsuit Comes Too Late, Internet Archive Says

First off today, Ernesto Van der Sar at Torrentfreak writes that the Internet Archive has hit back at a lawsuit filed by three major music labels saying that the rightsholders failed to timely follow up on a 2020 cease and desist letter, meaning that the lawsuit is barred by the statute of limitations.

The case deals with the Internet Archive’s “Great 78 Project”, which archives the sound of 78-RPM gramophone records. The stated goal is to preserve those records, which are obsolete, before they deteriorate. However, the project does make the recordings available on the website, even though many of the songs are still under copyright protection.

According to the Internet Archive, in 2020 the RIAA sent a cease and desist letter to them regarding the project. The Internet Archive responded but never heard back from the RIAA and that the lawsuit was filed after the three year statute of limitations expired. They also argue that the project is permitted under copyright law as the goal is to preserve rapidly-deteriorating sound recordings.

2: German Police Seize $2.1B Worth of Bitcoin in Piracy Sting

Next up today, Oliver Knight at CoinDesk reports that German police have seized 50,000 bitcoin, worth approximately $2.17 billion, as part of an ongoing investigation.

According to police, the issue is related to a 2013 piracy website where the proceeds of the site were converted into bitcoin. One of the suspects in that case voluntarily transferred the bitcoin to the police, which are holding on to it on a provisional basis.

The investigation is ongoing and is specifically targeting potential money laundering connected to the bitcoin. No official charges have been filed at this time.

3: AI Poisoning Tool Nightshade Received 250,000 Downloads in 5 days: ‘Beyond Anything We Imagined’

Finally today, Carl Franzen at VentureBeat reports that Nightshade, a free tool that aims to “poison” generative AI systems with bad image data has seen over 250,000 downloads in just five days.

This is according to a post from the project leader, Ben Zhao, who is a professor computer science at the University of Chicago. He claims that he created the tool to give artists a way to fight back against AI systems that use artists’ work to train without permission or compensation.

The tool works by “shading” images on a pixel level so they appear to an AI system to be something different from what humans see. The application was launched on January 18 and initial demand was so high that it crippled the University of Chicago’s servers, necessitating the launch of new mirror links. A similar tool the team created previously, Glaze, has also received 2.2 million since its launch in April 2023.

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