The Rise of the Robo Notice

 Posted by on August 25, 2015  No Responses »
Aug 252015
 

Jennifer Urban and I just published a short version of our work on notice and takedown in the Communications of the ACM (currently paywalled but accessible through most universities).  Here’s the general argument:

As automated systems became common, the number of takedown requests increased dramatically. For some online services, the numbers of complaints went from dozens or hundreds per year to hundreds of thousands or millions. In 2009, Google’s search service received less than 100 takedown requests. In 2014, it received 345 million requests. Although Google is the extreme outlier, other services—especially those in the copyright ‘hot zones’ around search, storage, and social media—saw order-of-magnitude increases. Many others—through luck, obscurity, or low exposure to copyright conflicts—remained within the “DMCA Classic” world of low-volume notice and takedown.

This split in the application of the law undermined the rough industry consensus about what services did to keep their safe harbor protection. As automated notices overwhelmed small legal teams, targeted services lost the ability to fully vet the complaints they received. Because companies exposed themselves to high statutory penalties if they ignored valid complaints, the safest path afforded by the DMCA was to remove all targeted material. Some companies did so. Some responded by developing automated triage procedures that prioritized high-risk notices for human review (most commonly, those sent by individuals).

Others began to move beyond the statutory requirements in an effort to reach agreement with rights holder groups and, in some cases, to reassert some control over the copyright disputes on their services.

Continue reading »

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Aug 192015
 

ncubeCross posted from Afro Leo, Link (CC-BY)

As reported by Jeremy Speres (here) South Africa’s Copyright Amendment Bill, 2015 has been published for public comment. The Department of Trade and Industry (DTI) has lined up several stakeholder consultations, one of which was held on 13 August 2015. The consultation process is intended to culminate in a Copyright Amendment Bill Conference on 27 August 2015. Continue reading »

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Aug 172015
 

sean - 150x150A workshop of academics and stakeholders on Internet Rights, Cultural Development and Balancing Features in South African Copyright Reform commended South Africa’s Department of Trade and Industry (DTI) for its public release of a Copyright Amendment Bill that would expand and clarify many user rights in the Copyright Act. The general message from the stakeholders at the meeting to DTI was that the reform bill succeeds in addressing many of the most pressing issues for copyright reform today, putting in place a good structure through which the details of the provisions can be analyzed and improved. Continue reading »

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Aug 142015
 

ipw-logo[Linda Daniels, IP Watch, Link (CC-BY-NC-SA)] A conference here this week elicited a robust debate amongst intellectual property stakeholders in South Africa about the objectives of the far-reaching draft Copyright Amendment Bill.

The Internet Rights, Cultural Development and Balancing Features in South African Copyright Reform conference was held on 11 August in Pretoria. Continue reading »

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Aug 132015
 

fix-the-patent-laws[Marcus Low, Borrie LaGrange, Umunyana Rugege, Link (CC-BY-SA)] A submission to the United States Government shows South Africa is facing pressure from the pharmaceutical industry to backtrack on intellectual property (IP) law reform that aims to improve access to medicines in exchange for eligibility for ongoing inclusion in the United States’ African Growth and Opportunity Act (AGOA). The Treatment Action Campaign (TAC), Doctors Without Borders (MSF), SECTION27 and the Stop Stock Outs Project (SSP), as members of the Fix the Patent Laws coalition, are deeply concerned by such requests. Continue reading »

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Aug 122015
 

levine-sandeen[with Sharon K. Sandeen from the Hamline University School of Law] We write to express our continued concerns about the Defend Trade Secrets Act (“DTSA”) and our willingness to assist you in determining how best to improve enforcement of legitimate trade secret rights. In August 2014, 31 academics signed a letter raising many concerns with similar legislation then pending in the House and Senate. We attach a copy of that letter, which can be found here (the “August 2014 letter”). Continue reading »

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Aug 122015
 

ecuador flagThe Ecuadorian Commission on Justice and Structure of the State has initiated a plan to socialize potential reforms to the criminal code. This includes changing penalties for copyright and trademark piracy. This reform is intended to bring the country into compliance with its TRIPS requirements. It seeks to punish commercial scale piracy with fines to exceed fifty thousand dollars. Nonetheless, representatives of the entertainment industry have questioned the inability of the reform to punish every type of infringer.

For more information (in Spanish), see Asamblea inició socialización de reformas al Código Orgánico Integral Penal.

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Jul 292015
 

South African FlagAs you may know, we have been lobbying since 1998 for better copyright laws.  On 27 July 2015, the Department of Trade and Industry published a new Copyright Amendment Bill for public comment.

See:  http://www.gov.za/documents/copyright-amendment-bill-comments-invited-27-jul-2015-0000.  Now you have the chance to comment and ensure that the Copyright Bill provides adequate provisions for education, research, libraries, archives, persons with disabilities, digitisation, etc.  Continue reading »

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Jul 282015
 

marcelaThe current Colombian copyright law appears to be a traditional copyright framework that seeks to protect authors and provides an enforcement mechanism[1] for those rights while at the same time providing limitations and exceptions in favor of public interests according to international standards.[2] A closer view of the law, however, reveals that Colombian copyright law favors authors’ protections and undermines public interest uses, especially in the digital environment. This regulatory framework does not favor the incorporation of technology in education. Continue reading »

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Jul 202015
 

UK flagThe UK Intellectual Property Office (IPO) has opened a consultation on a proposal to extend the penalties for online copyright infringement to ten years imprisonment. Currently, the maximum prison term is two years. The consultation paper notes that the penalty for theft of physical goods is ten years, and argues that there is a strong case for “harmonizing” the two penalties: Continue reading »

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Jul 172015
 

Annemarie-BridyAuthor: Annemarie Bridy

Abstract: In the years since passage of the Digital Millennium Copyright Act (“DMCA”), the copyright industries have demanded that online intermediaries — both those covered by the DMCA and those falling outside the statute’s ambit — do more than the law requires to protect their intellectual property rights. In particular, they have sought new ways to reach and shutter “pirate sites” beyond the reach of United States law. Their demands have been answered through an expanding regime of nominally voluntary “DMCA-plus” enforcement. Continue reading »

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Jul 142015
 

TorrentFreak-logo[Camden for Torrent Freak, Link (CC-BY-NC)] Earlier this month several music industry organizations in the UK won a judicial review which renders the Government’s decision to allow copying for personal use unlawful. Following this unexpected decision are UK citizens now breaking the law if they copy their own CDs? How will the fate of the legislation be determined? Continue reading »

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