A young man, who as a teenager file-shared two music tracks, has finally discovered his fate. After rightsholders demanded damages of 600 euros ($828) the case dragged through the legal system. After nearly five years a court in Germany has just published its decision. It ruled that the damages demands of the rightsholders were excessive and instead ordered the defendant to pay 30 euros ($41.00) damages.
From the Program on Information Justice and Intellectual Property at Washington College of Law.
Over 75 law professors sent a letter to President Obama today asking him to "direct the USTR to halt its public endorsement of ACTA and subject the text to a meaningful participation process that can influence the shape of the agreement going forward." The full text of the letter is at bottom.
In an 'ethical hacking' experiment conducted across six UK cities, nearly 40,000 networks were revealed as high-risk, opening up the personal data of thousands of individuals (1).
More from CPP
(Irish Internet Service Provider) UPC has won a legal action taken in the High Court by record labels over illegal downloading and file-sharing.
Warner Music, Universal Music, Sony BMG and EMI Records had been attempting to force internet service providers to adopt a “three strikes” rule to halt copyright infringement and piracy by internet users.
The High Court ruled that laws to identify and cut off internet users illegally copying music files were not enforceable in Ireland.
More from IrishTimes.com
Senator Ron Wyden (D-OR) has written to the American Law Division of the Congressional Research Service requesting that the final draft of ACTA be reviewed. Wyden is concerned that the provisions in ACTA may require changes in US law in order to guarantee adherence, despite constant assurances to the contrary from the USTR and other negotiating parties.
Read the letter here (.pdf)
Established with strong legislative powers under the last government, Consumer Focus is tasked with advocating consumer rights and encouraging businesses, public services and policymakers to prioritise consumer welfare.
The abolition comes amid government efforts to slash the number of QuANGOs as a cost-saving measure, however the right wing pressure group 'The Taxpayer's Alliance' has also mounted a campaign against the organisation.
Consumer Focus' responsibilities are to be passed on to Citizen's Advice, a network of charities predominantly staffed by volunteers.
Chiranuch Premchaipoen, otherwise known as Jiew, has been charged, under the Thia 2007 Computer Crime Act, with defamation of the Thai Royal Family. Apparently an item on her website, the independent news service ‘Prachatai’, included reader comments deemed defamatory, attracting several complaints.
From Digital Democracy
Already indicted under ten charges of the Thai New Computer Crime Act, she is set to go on trial in February. Jiew was previously detained on charges related to content posted by users on a website she runs for the independent news organization, Prachathai, which means “Free People” in English. Under local laws, those who run sites are responsible for all content on them, including comments. Under lese majeste laws, it is illegal to criticize the royal family. Authorities say she did remove such comments quickly enough.
Digital Democracy has set up a donation site to help Jiew with her impending legal fight.
Michael Geist has very helpfully accumulated a cross section of reactions to the new ACTA draft here.
As has previously been made apparent, Intelligence and law enforcement services are unhappy with the disconnection measures, touted by rights-holders as a solution to online copyright infringement. It is feared that those committed to sharing copyrighted material online will utilise increasingly sophisticated levels of encryption in order to avoid detection by the authorities, and the resulting punitive measures. Problem is that this will increase the amount of encrypted data being exchanged on the web, through which law enforcement and intelligence agencies must sift in their search for child porn, terrorist communications etc. etc.
They [the U.S. Intelligence Community] think it’s wrong to pass legislation to fight the simple, though illegal, exchange of movies and music because it means file-sharers will simply equip themselves with strong encryption tools to avoid detection, and make both the copyright holders and the govt losers in the end.
So now the true, long term, costs of legislation-by-lobbyist are being felt.
Bug Brother (Translated from French)
OWNI Live (French, again_
The latest, and supposedly final, draft of the Anti Counterfeiting Trade Agreement has now been published. This was negotiated in Tokyo between the 23/09/10 & 01/10/10, amid growing dissent from the European Parliament, the Mexican Senate and a multitude of NGOs and campaign groups.
Download .pdf from the US Trade Representative here