Archive for 2011/12/21
DeSopa intercepts URLs, sends the base URL to three offshore DNS services via HTTP, makes a best effort to check that two of them are equivalent, caches the IP for the browser session, redirects to the equivalent URL using the IP, and substitutes out the domain name in the source code with the IP address for future requestsPosted: 2011/12/21 in Education / Awareness
Facebook has turned into the largest, clearest mirror ever produced by the internet, expressly designed to chronicle our lives – and to dig deep down into the primordial muck of our social ancient historyPosted: 2011/12/21 in Education / Awareness
Mobile Broadband operator O2 UK accused of unjustly blocking access to the website of Sheffield based church group The Crowded HousePosted: 2011/12/21 in Blocking, Education / Awareness, Filtering
The restriction, which appears to have been in place for at least four months, is usually imposed upon sites that “feature adult content“. A quick check of the related website appears to show no related content of any significance, yet O2 has refused to remove the block; partly because their staff don’t seem to know how.
The real humdinger of a quote comes from ICE Special Agent William Ross, who earlier in the piece notes that he was influenced by Hollywood repeatedly asking him to do their job. But when confronted with the point (made by Corynne McSherry from EFF) that “Arresting people and putting them in jail for having some links online doesn’t really strike me as a good way for us to invest our time and energy.” Ross hits back:
“I am a law-enforcement officer,” says Special Agent Ross. “I want to put people in jail.”
But, really, if the problem is just dealing with a small number of sites, is that really worth such a massive infrastructure change, since pretty much every technically clueful commentator has noted the massive cost on internet security of using these laws?
Did You Embed The Leaked Trailer For Dark Knight Rises On Your Blog? Under SOPA, You May Face Jail TimePosted: 2011/12/21 in Education / Awareness, Legislation
Ofcom’s director of internet policy Campbell Cowie is deeply hostile to the DEA, and quite coincidentally nothing’s happenedPosted: 2011/12/21 in Copyright, Education / Awareness, Illegal File Sharing, Public Policy
Facebook will begin adding photos of its users to third-party adverts appearing in users’ news feedsPosted: 2011/12/21 in Education / Awareness, New Business Models, Online advertising
“Despite the criminal conviction of its founders, the Sweden-based ThePirateBay continues to facilitate the download of unauthorized content. ThePirateBay recently ranked among the top 100 websites in both global and U.S. traffic, according to Alexa.com,” the report explains TPB’s inclusion.
The USTR also zooms in on two of the world’s largest file-hosting services, Megaupload and Putlocker. This pushes Megaupload into the spotlight for the second time this month, after a public endorsement by a wide range of celebrity stars resulted in a YouTube takedown scandal and a subsequent lawsuit last week.
Dutch Healthcare Insurers Force Healthcare Workers (And Their Patients) To Sign On To Private Sector Electronic Patient Record SystemPosted: 2011/12/21 in Education / Awareness, New Business Models, Privacy / Data Protection
Dutch healthcare Minister says there’s nothing she can do about it. Dutch parliament is afraid that insurers will go and exchange these records for commercial reasons
Dutch language news article:
Hacker Adrian Lamo took the stand on the fifth day of Manning’s pretrial hearing
US military is holding on to a major souvenir of the war: a massive database packed with retinal scans, thumb prints and other biometric data identifying millions of IraqisPosted: 2011/12/21 in Education / Awareness
Srivas left Google to found a startup that takes the ideas behind Google’s top-secret infrastructure and delivers them to the average businessPosted: 2011/12/21 in Education / Awareness, Google, New Business Models
Big entertainment companies accused of using YouTube’s ContentID system (not the DMCA) to ‘claim’ a ton of public domain worksPosted: 2011/12/21 in Copyright, Education / Awareness
China Hackers Hit U.S. Chamber – Attacks Breached Computer System of Business-Lobbying Group; Emails StolenPosted: 2011/12/21 in Cybercrime, Education / Awareness
Employees from both Nokia and Microsoft have been caught astroturfing a negative Nokia Lumia 800 posted on the Indian website Moneylife.inPosted: 2011/12/21 in Education / Awareness
RIAA insists: it wasn’t us, it was a mysterious third party vendor who unknowingly smeared our good namePosted: 2011/12/21 in Education / Awareness, Illegal File Sharing
While we are prepared to believe that RIAA staff didn’t download these files, we are left wondering what mysterious third party did. Also, is it even allowed by the official registry to register a range of IP-addresses to your private organization, and then allow others to use these IPs?
Also, just as a bit of friendly advice, it’s generally not a good idea to let others use your organization’s addresses to browse the internet. This time it’s “just” copyrighted material up for debate, but who knows what else they may be sharing online.
Considering the RIAA’s past of suing tens of thousands of file-sharers for copyright infringement, the excuse is perhaps even more embarrassing than taking full responsibility. When some of the 20,000 plus people who were sued by the RIAA over the years used the “someone else did it” excuse this was shrugged off by the music group’s lawyers. Can these people have their money back now? We doubt it.
Did Dutch Collecting Society BUMA / STEMRA Remove Explanation For Alleged BitTorrent Downloads Because It Would Exonerate Every File Sharer?
9th Circuit has affirmed the lower court’s ruling and noted that Veoh, indeed, was perfectly legal. The ruling is pretty thorough and comprehensive and dismisses some of the ridiculous claims we’ve see here at times.
First, it notes that Veoh is clearly protected by the DMCA. Some (including UMG) have argued repeatedly that because Veoh (and others) don’t just “store” the content, but process it for display/performance, that this goes beyond the DMCA protections.The court notes that, if this interpretation is accurate, it makes much of the rest of Section 512(c) of the DMCA totally meaningless — and that doesn’t make any sense.
Furthermore, it points out that it would be kind of silly to suggest the DMCA only protects storage but never access.
The court educated UMG to the fact that, you know, not all music online is infringing.
Then the court points out that Congress’ expressed purpose behind the DMCA was to “facilitate making available quickly and conveniently via the Internet . . . movies, music, software, and literary works” and that’s “precisely the service Veoh provides.”
The court makes a key point that we’ve discussed plenty of times: the only one who really knows if the material is infringing is the copyright holder:
Copyright holders know precisely what materials they own, and are thus better able to efficiently identify infringing copies than service providers like Veoh, who cannot readily ascertain what material is copyrighted and what is not.
Congress made a considered policy determination that the “DMCA notification procedures [would] place the burden of policing copyright infringement — identifying the potentially infringing material and adequately documenting infringement — squarely on the owners.” of the copyright.
The court goes on to remind UMG that it also doesn’t own all rights to every artist signed to the label. UMG had argued that because Veoh ads popped up on searches for UMG artists, that Veoh knew it was infringing. But the court notes that’s crazy.
First, Congress explicitly stated in three different reports that the DMCA was intended to “protect qualifying service providers from liability for all monetary relief for direct, vicarious and contributory infringement.” …. Under UMG’s interpretation, however, every service provider subject to vicarious liability would be automatically excluded from safe harbor protection. Second, Congress made clear that it intended to provide safe harbor protection not by altering the common law vicarious liability standards, but rather by carving out permanent safe harbors to that liability for Internet service providers even while the common law standards continue to evolve.
Finally, the court also soundly rejects UMG’s attempt to bring Veoh’s investors into the lawsuit for vicarious and contributory infringement, as well as inducement. The problem here is that since Veoh was protected by the DMCA there was no infringement that its investors could be guilty of secondarily helping to proceed:
It is well-established that “[s]econdary liability for copyright infringement does not exist in the absence of direct infringement . . . .”