July 25, 2008

Wishful Thinking from the LATimes [9:49 am]

Pulling Prince from YouTube (pdf) (see this earlier post for background)

There should be some deterrent against copyright holders attacking fair uses online, deliberately or otherwise. At the very least, they should have to look at potentially infringing uses of their works and consider fair-use law before sending take-down notices. The courts may be the ultimate arbiter of individual fair-use claims, but copyright holders shouldn’t be free to ignore the guidance provided by federal statutes and previous court rulings. Besides, taking down baby videos won’t make Universal or Prince any richer in the long run. They’d be better off working with YouTube to capitalize on fans’ enthusiasm than scrubbing the site clean of his hits.

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The Rental Model [9:39 am]

EFF: Yahoo Music should compensate customers

Yahoo Music is telling customers that it wont allow users who bought songs from the service to transfer them to new devices or PCs after September 30.

The announcement on Thursday has stunned the Electronic Frontier Foundation, a watchdog group for Internet users. Surely, Yahoo should have learned something from the MSN debacle. Just a month ago, Microsoft reversed a decision to stop releasing authorization keys for the copy protections it placed on songs, and will issue keys for three more years.

“Some people think they can use music wrapped in digital rights management just like they do a CD,” Corynne McSherry, an attorney with EFF, told CNET News. “This should teach everyone that you cant.”

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