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June 15, 2007

The MySpace Crackdown Begins [10:56 am]

So, what’s more than a little scary is that the article seems to indicate that they were arrested for merely *using* MySpace, rather than any actual crime. This bears watching carefully (See below): 7 sex offenders who use MySpace arrestedpdf

Seven convicted sex offenders with profiles on MySpace.com have been arrested in what Texas officials said was the country’s first large-scale crackdown of registered offenders who use the social networking Web site.

[...] They were picked up after MySpace.com released the names of offenders with online profiles to the state Attorney General’s Office, which had issued a subpoena for the site’s subscriber information.

Whew! The Reuters writeup is a little more informative: Texas Authorities Arrest 7 Former MySpace Memberspdf

The seven, whose profiles on MySpace had already been removed under an internal program to weed out sex offenders prowling the News Corp.-owned site, were arrested for breaking parole or probation rules.

[...] Six of the men were arrested because they had MySpace profiles even though their parole conditions banned them from using the Internet. One was arrested because he had failed to register as a sex offender with local authorities.

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As Expected [10:44 am]

(sorry, I know this is from yesterday, but I’ve been a bit jammed up)

We all suspected, now we know it’s going to be bad: FBI Finds It Frequently Overstepped in Collecting Datapdf

The vast majority of the new violations were instances in which telephone companies and Internet providers gave agents phone and e-mail records the agents did not request and were not authorized to collect. The agents retained the information anyway in their files, which mostly concerned suspected terrorist or espionage activities.

But two dozen of the newly-discovered violations involved agents’ requests for information that U.S. law did not allow them to have, according to the audit results provided to The Washington Post. Only two such examples were identified earlier in the smaller sample.

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Old News (But New To Me): UK and the Right of Publicity [8:24 am]

Dr. Martens apologizes for ad featuring dead rock starspdf, with the four offending images

Dr. Martens’ recent British ad campaign featuring posters showing Kurt Cobain, Joey Ramone and two other dead rock stars wearing their boots in heaven may have broken new ground in tastelessness. Now the stars’ estates are firing back just as Dr. Martens has dumped the ad firm, Saatchi & Saatchi, that created the images.

The ads, which also featured the Sex Pistols’ Sid Vicious and the Clash’s Joe Strummer in similar scenes, ran only in Britain, where companies are not bound to get permission from dead celebrities’ estates to use their images in advertisements. The ads instantly attracted criticism for showing Nirvana frontman Cobain, who shot himself, and Vicious, who died of a drug overdose, wearing the boots with angel robes. Tacky, sure, but in the case of the Ramones’ singer Joey, it was aesthetically and religiously inaccurate to boot.

It looks like Ron Goldman’s dad has plenty of other options in case this one falls through: O.J. Simpson’s book rights may go to victim’s dadpdf

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Here We Go [8:03 am]

Performers to push for radio royaltiespdf

The MusicFirst Coalition, which counts recording artists Don Henley, Celine Dion, Christina Aguilera and Wyclef Jean among its members, intends to lobby Congress for new laws requiring the payments by broadcasters.

The group said U.S. performers, including superstar vocalists and background singers, deserve to be paid when their work is aired on AM or FM radio.

“The artists and the musicians and the community in general have come together to say now is really time to make sure that when music is played on the radio, that people who perform that music are paid fairly to do it,” said Mark Kadish, the coalition’s executive director.

IMHO, this means a reopening of the question of payola, since the radio stations are certainly offering a promotional service — shouldn’t *they* get their due?

Note that the NAB sees this group for what it is — a stalking horse for the RIAA: NAB Responds to musicFIRST Coalition

“NAB will aggressively fight RIAA’s proposed performance tax on local radio stations,” said NAB Executive Vice President Dennis Wharton. “Congress has long recognized that radio airplay of music generates millions of dollars in revenue for record labels and artists. Were it not for radio’s free promotional airplay of music on stations all over America, most successful recording artists would still be playing in a garage.”

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