Posts Tagged ‘ intellectual property ’

The White House doesn’t want you to know the TPP’s looming effects on US copyright laws

February 25, 2015
posted by

Maira Sutton Electronic Frontier Foundation
by Maira Sutton  

"As the White House doubles down on its attempt to pass legislation to fast track secret trade agreements like the Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP) agreement, their oft-repeated refrain about these deals' digital copyright enforcement provisions is that these policies would not alter U.S. law. ... But such claims are very misleading. Leaked texts have confirmed again and again that the TPP contains Hollywood's wish list of anti-user policies -- the result of years of lobbying and schmoozing with trade delegates." (02/25/15)

http://tinyurl.com/phprxny  

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Texas: Apple must pay patent troll $532 million, jury rules

February 25, 2015
posted by

Gigaom    

"Apple must pay a shell company $532.9 million because iTunes infringes upon three patents related to online patents [sic], a jury in East Texas ruled on Tuesday. The company in question, named Smartflash LLC, is also based in Texas and doesn't make or do anything besides file patent lawsuits, as an Apple spokesperson pointed out. 'Smartflash makes no products, has no employees, creates no jobs, has no U.S. presence, and is exploiting our patent system to seek royalties for technology Apple invented,' said Apple's Kristin Huguet ..." (02/25/15)

http://tinyurl.com/otdknnz  

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Hollywood lobby group’s creepy “open love letter” to the TPP

February 24, 2015
posted by

Electronic Frontier Foundation Electronic Frontier Foundation
by Maira Sutton  

"We didn't know how much copyright maximalists longed for the Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP) agreement -- until we saw this creepy 'open love letter' to the TPP from one of the biggest, most powerful copyright lobby groups, the Global Intellectual Property Center. We couldn't have made this up if we tried. ... If you didn't know about the harms the TPP would do to our digital rights, this would look like the copyright industry writing an amusing blog post that just turned out strange. But if you think about how this massive secret deal is a long-term scheme to undermine democratic rules and rights we have as users, it comes across as just plain vulgar. This is Hollywood lobbyists playfully celebrating their cozy relationship with secret trade negotiations and the hold they have on our state officials." (02/23/15)

http://tinyurl.com/p4taoqw  

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Photo hobbyist attacked by patent bully

February 17, 2015
posted by

Electronic Frontier Foundation
by staff  

"EFF's client runs Bytephoto.com, which has hosted user-submitted photos and run competitions for the best since 2003. In 2007, a company called Garfum.com applied for a patent on the 'Method of Sharing Multi-Media Content Among Users in a Global Computer Network.' The patent, U.S. Pat. No. 8,209,618, takes the well-known concept of a competition by popular vote and applies it to the modern context of generic computer networks -- despite the fact that courts have ruled that this kind of abstract idea using generic computer technology cannot be patented. In September of last year, Garfum used this patent to accuse EFF's client of infringement, and filed suit. In the motion to dismiss the complaint, EFF argues that the patent should be declared invalid." (02/17/15)

http://tinyurl.com/plczfrw  

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It’s time to destroy DRM

February 11, 2015
posted by

Erick Vasconcelos Center for a Stateless Society
by Erick Vasconcelos  

"From Apple's cat-and-mouse race with jailbreaking phone buyers, to Amazon's move into 'exclusive' programming for its streaming service, to Netflix's region-blocking (enthusiastically supported by the Motion Picture Association of America, a powerful US IP lobby), to rampant user control schemes by console video game makers, DRM has a long record of enabling predatory behavior by politically privileged players in captive 'markets.' The enforcement of 'intellectual property' claims has become so extensive and intrusive that 'rights holders' feel increasingly free to interfere in production of content formerly considered fair use." (02/10/15)

http://c4ss.org/content/35685  

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MusiCare acceptance speech

February 10, 2015
posted by

Showbiz 411
by Bob Dylan  

"These songs didn't come out of thin air. I didn't just make them up out of whole cloth. Contrary to what Lou Levy said, there was a precedent. It all came out of traditional music: traditional folk music, traditional rock 'n' roll and traditional big-band swing orchestra music. I learned lyrics and how to write them from listening to folk songs. And I played them, and I met other people that played them back when nobody was doing it. Sang nothing but these folk songs, and they gave me the code for everything that’s fair game, that everything belongs to everyone." [hat tip -- Nick Gillespie] (02/07/15)

http://tinyurl.com/py72m9k  

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US ranks first in intellectual property [sic] rights [sic]

February 7, 2015
posted by

National Center for Policy Analysis National Center for Policy Analysis
by Jeong Seo  

"It should be noted that although the U.S. ranks number one in the GIPC Index, the Property Rights Alliance ranked the U.S. 17th in its 2014 International Property Rights Index which aims to quantify the strength of both physical and intellectual property rights. IP protection is essential to developing innovative solutions and products in any sector, but perhaps even more so in health care." (02/06/15)

http://tinyurl.com/laegdft  

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Negotiators burn their last opportunity to salvage the TPP by caving on copyright term extension

February 5, 2015
posted by

Electronic Frontier Foundation
by Maira Sutton  

"New reports indicate that Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP) negotiators have agreed to language that would bind its 12 signatory nations to extend copyright terms to match the United States' already excessive length of copyright. ... Negotiators have been made well aware that there is no economic rationale that can justify this extension. The fact that they have chosen to ignore what is a clear consensus among economists points to the fact that this agreement has not been driven by reason, but by the utter corruption of the process by lobbyists for multinational entertainment conglomerates, who have twisted what is notionally a trade negotiation into a special interest money-grab." (02/04/15)

http://tinyurl.com/qzlsyl3  

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Who will own the Internet of Things? (Hint: Not the users)

January 21, 2015
posted by

Electronic Frontier Foundation Electronic Frontier Foundation    

"From phones to cars to refrigerators to farm equipment, software is helping our stuff work better and smarter. But those features come at a high hidden cost: the rapid erosion of ownership. Why does that matter? Because when it comes to digital products, owners have rights. Renters on the other hand, have only permission. The source of the problem is simple: copyright." (01/20/15)

http://tinyurl.com/ondfvws  

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SCOTUS rules for Teva over MS drug patent

January 20, 2015
posted by

Reuters Reuters    

"The U.S. Supreme Court on Tuesday ruled that Teva Pharmaceutical Industries Ltd can still benefit from patent protection for top-selling multiple sclerosis drug Copaxone, dealing a blow to generic drugmakers looking to market a cheaper rival product. In a 7-2 vote, the justices sent the case back to the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Federal Circuit for further review saying it had not used the correct approach in analyzing whether the patent, due to expire in September 2015, was valid. The appeals court had thrown out the patent in 2013." (01/20/15)

http://tinyurl.com/ow5cfth  

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Our patent mess and the misery of its “trolls”

January 19, 2015
posted by

Anthony Wile The Daily Bell
by Anthony Wile  

Anthony Wile interviews William J. Watkins Jr. Watkins: "When you look at our torts system, especially, there are significant problems. We have moved from a negligence regime where if someone breached a duty of care to another person then they could be held liable for the resulting damages for that breach. That's fairly basic, fairly straightforward. What we are seeing now is a move more toward the idea of strict liability. Of course, strict liability is most often associated with products liability cases but we see this whole concept permeating our legal culture." (01/18/15)

http://tinyurl.com/l9zy5oo  

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Bouncing photons and claiming them as your property

January 16, 2015
posted by

Kent McManigal Kent's "Hooligan Libertarian" Blog
by Kent McManigal  

"You don't own the photons which have bounced off you you. Not even if someone else captures them digitally. Sorry if that upsets you. Yes, I understand if you are upset that someone took an 'upskirt' photo of you. He (or she) acted like a jerk. But you weren't touched in any way, nor were you coerced into changing anything you were doing. You have not been stolen from nor aggressed against. Call the photographer names if you want, but if you use (or threaten) force against him (or her) you are the one initiating force." (01/15/15)

http://tinyurl.com/mrxh6ux  

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Consumers deserve protection against the scourge of DRM — will the UN help?

January 11, 2015
posted by

Electronic Frontier Foundation
by Jeremy Malcolm  

"Normally when you buy a product that has a hidden defect, consumer protection law in your state or country comes to the rescue. For example, if you purchase a product -- say, a book -- it comes with an implicit promise that it will be fit for the ordinary purposes that books are used for, such as allowing you to read it, quote from it, lend it to others, summarize it on your blog, and donate or recycle it when you're done. If the book can't be used in these common-sense ways, and you weren't warned about that before handing over your money, consumer protection laws will generally give you the right to a remedy such as a refund of what you paid. There is no reason why digital products such as e-books should be treated any differently than physical products such as paper books in this regard. Yet in practice, they too often are, and the blame falls on DRM." (0/08/15)

http://tinyurl.com/mkxy8xj  

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Toyota releases hydrogen fuel cell patents for free use

January 8, 2015
posted by

Clean Technica    

"Toyota will be making more than 5,600 of its hydrogen fuel-cell technologies patents free to use for a large number of companies in the industry/sector -- absolutely no charges, including no royalty payments -- according to recent reports. ... Among the many patents being opened up are Toyota’s patents granted in the development of its first hydrogen vehicle -- the 2016 Toyota Mirai. Among the others are patents for software to control hydrogen fueling systems (~3350); patents for fuel stack technology (~1970); patents relating to high-pressure tanks for hydrogen fuel (~290); and patents relating to the production and supply of hydrogen-fuel (~70)." (01/08/15)

http://tinyurl.com/n6256gc  

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Patent troll can’t stop people from accessing their medical records online anymore

January 8, 2015
posted by

Electronic Frontier Foundation Electronic Frontier Foundation
by Adi Kamdar  

"You must comply with a new law that was just passed, but doing so means you are probably violating one of our patents. So you might as well pay up now. This is essentially what a demand letter sent by MyMedicalRecords, Inc., an electronic health records provider with numerous broad patents, could have said in its letter to a youth treatment center in Oakland. We received this letter on Trolling Effects in December 2013. It falls in the category of threats from patent holders who decide to go after companies for abiding by new rules or regulations -- doing so, they allege, infringes one or more of their patents." (01/07/15)

http://tinyurl.com/nutywzy  

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Copyright and the Great Library at Alexandria

January 8, 2015
posted by

Anarchy != Chaos
by Curt  

"When considering the government granted monopoly that is Copyright, it is important to keep in mind that the original reasoning and justification used for legislating Copyright in these United States, was to create a modern Library of Alexandria. Every ship that sailed into the port city of Alexandria, Egypt, was required to give up any books, maps, and the like, that were on board to the Library in order that they be copied (if the library didn't already have one). The books would be returned once copied, although it would be fun to know how many ships had the copies given to them instead. That was why the Library was so extensive and important. The absurdities of Copyright as it is enforced now violate every reason for having it at all." (01/07/15)

http://tinyurl.com/nbcf45x  

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Ford tries to shut down independent repair tool with copyright

January 8, 2015
posted by

Electronic Frontier Foundation Electronic Frontier Foundation
by Kit Walsh  

"At EFF, we think people ought to be able to understand how their devices work and repair them without asking permission of the manufacturer. We also think independent repair companies should to be able to compete with manufacturers in the aftermarket. Simply put, you should be able to fix your stuff or choose someone you trust to do it for you. The Ford Motor Company, however, takes a different view. It recently sued Autel, a manufacturer of third-party diagnostics for automobiles, for creating a diagnostic tool that includes a list of Ford car parts and their specifications. Ford claims that it owns a copyright on this list of parts, the 'FFData file,' and thus can keep competitors from including it in their diagnostic tools." (01/06/15)

http://tinyurl.com/op6ssnw  

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It’s not too late for Uber to avoid Stupid Patent of the Month

December 30, 2014
posted by

Electronic Frontier Foundation Electronic Frontier Foundation
by Vera Ranieri  

"[I]magine you own a transportation company. You have a limited number of seats and you know that customers are willing to pay different amounts based on their sensitivity to cost. But you don't want seats to go empty, since every empty seat is a missed profit opportunity. So you implement a system where the more demand is up or supply is down, the more you charge. Or conversely, the more demand is down and supply is up, the less you charge. And then you file a patent application for your 'invention.' Because Uber did just that, Uber is being forewarned of its risk of receiving the Stupid Patent of the Month award." (12/29/14)

http://tinyurl.com/nt8yk8d  

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“Rockstar” trolls sell patents for $900 million

December 24, 2014
posted by

NDTV [India]    

"A group led by Apple and Microsoft has sold about 4,000 technology patents to patent management company RPX Corp. for $900 million. ... RPX, which is based in San Francisco, formed a subsidiary to manage the [Nortel Networks] patents and [extort] payments from more than 30 companies, including Google." (12/23/14)

http://tinyurl.com/q4gadje  

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Is every orc an author?

December 17, 2014
posted by

Electronic Frontier Foundation Electronic Frontier Foundation
by Corynne McSherry  

"A panel of eleven Ninth Circuit federal judges heard oral arguments yesterday in Garcia v. Google, a copyright case arising from the notorious 'Innocence of Muslims' video that was associated with violent protests around the world. The appellant, Cindy Lee Garcia, argues that she holds a copyright in her five-second performance in the video (a performance she says was tricked into giving), and is trying to use that claim to get the video pulled off the internet. To the shock of many, last February two Ninth Circuit judges agreed she might have a claim and ordered Google to remove the video from YouTube and prevent future uploads. Yesterday’s hearing revisited the facts and law that led to that decision." (12/16/14)

http://tinyurl.com/mydpouj  

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Jury finds for Apple, throws out frivolous billion-dollar lawsuit

December 16, 2014
posted by

Ars Technica Ars Technica    

"After just a few hours of deliberation, a jury of eight men and women threw out a long-running lawsuit against Apple that sought more than a billion dollars in damages. ... The plaintiffs claimed that iTunes 7.0 included updates that were meant to push out Apple competitors like RealNetworks, which had a competing DRM system called 'Harmony.' After the 7.0 update, Real's competing DRM system wouldn't work with iPods. Plaintiffs' lawyers said that move violated competition laws, resulting in Apple dominating the market and resulting in overcharges for iPods. Apple countered that it was Real who should take responsibility for what was basically a hack of Apple DRM." (12/16/14)

http://tinyurl.com/pds7txw  

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Isohunt resurrects The Pirate Bay

December 15, 2014
posted by

ZDNet ZDNet    

"Days after The Pirate Bay was wiped from the Web, many believed that it was only a matter of time before a carbon copy of the website's database reappeared online. Thanks to The Pirate Bay's database of torrent links being freely available for download, it would only take another organization to upload the site's base and cater for traffic levels in order to resurrect the system. It seems the game of whack-a-mole with law enforcement is back on, thanks to Isohunt stepping into the breach. Isohunt, one of many torrent search websites blocked [sic] in countries including the United Kingdom, recreated a version of The Pirate Bay over the weekend." (12/15/14)

http://www.zdnet.com/article/isohunt-steps-in-to-resurrect-pirate-bay/  

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Maybe we should like patents

December 12, 2014
posted by

Adam Smith Institute Adam Smith Institute
by Ben Southwood  

"For a long time I was very sceptical of the benefits of patents. For one thing, they seemed to interfere with other types of property -- Apple's patents over certain shapes for phones mean Google cannot use its factories, materials, etc. in certain ways. For another, I coincidentally had come across work suggesting their benefits are overstated, including Against Intellectual Monopoly (appropriately available in full online) by Michele Boldrin and David K. Levine. But three recent papers exploiting a novel source of data have made me reconsider, since they throw cold water on one of the popular alternatives to patents: innovation prizes." (12/12/14)

http://www.adamsmith.org/blog/economics/maybe-we-should-like-patents/  

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Two bad arguments against IP

December 11, 2014
posted by

C4SIF Center for the Study of Innovative Freedom
by Stephan Kinsella  

"I’ve noted before the dearth of good arguments for intellectual property (There are No Good Arguments for Intellectual Property). In a recent Facebook post, I mentioned two weak/confused arguments used against IP arguments and claims." (12/09/14)

http://c4sif.org/2014/12/two-bad-arguments-against-ip/  

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The state can’t sink our battleship

December 11, 2014
posted by

C4SS Center for a Stateless Society
by Nick Ford  

"Gizmodo reports that Swedish police raided the Pirate Bay, seizing its servers and shutting down its web site on December 9. My first reactions were irritation and even anger. But now I just feel like laughing. The state is an obsolete organization and becomes more and more so as it continuously tries to enforce the unenforceable." (12/11/14)

http://c4ss.org/content/34046  

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