Posts by Sherwin Siy:

Today, Google announced that it would create a sort of legal defense fund for fair use YouTube videos that have received DMCA takedown notices. Under the new program, Google has selected a handful of videos as clear fair uses, despite accusations of copyright holders, and will indemnify the uploaders for up to $1 million in legal fees and possible damages if the rightsholders sued for infringement.
Read More
With the new anticircumvention rules from the Library of Congress, it’s now legal under copyright law for patients to bypass digital locks on their medical devices so they can access the data stored on them. That’s significant progress for people like Ben West (who not only develops software to get patients’ glucose monitors to talk to their devices, but also uses it on his own) and Hugo Campos (who wants to keep getting data off of his implanted heart monitor). It’s a moment worth celebrating.
Read More
On Monday, the 9th U.S. Circuit of Appeals held that, yes, you can be sued if you tell an online host to remove content that was a fair use. The case, Lenz v. Universal, stemmed from the notorious “dancing baby” takedown, in which Universal Music sent a takedown notice to YouTube because Stephanie Lenz uploaded a home video of her toddler dancing to a Prince song.
Read More
On Wednesday, we filed an amicus brief in the 9th Circuit Court of Appeals, asking the court to overturn a district court decision for Flo & Eddie against Pandora. Flo & Eddie, the company that owns the rights to The Turtles’ albums, has sued streaming service Pandora, saying that Pandora needed to get a license to play their records.
Read More
In the tech policy world, there’s a tendency to assume that changes to industries and markets come from technology. The focus is on the new gadget (or vastly cheaper or more reliable version of it) that upsets existing ways of doing things. For instance, the advent of cheap CCDs led to ubiquitous camera phones, changing the way most of us buy and use cameras. Film has become an exception rather than the rule; purpose-built digital cameras have to aim for a more dedicated market; even museums have changed how they present themselves.
Read More
Not long ago, SoundExchange board member and musician David Byrne highlighted a key point that the loudest voices in music policy keep talking around: no one is saying how much money goes where.
Read More
Last week, Public Knowledge filed an amicus brief in lawsuit between the company Flo & Eddie, which owns the rights to The Turtles’ records, and satellite radio company XM Sirius. In the brief, we argue that a New York district court wrongly assumed that Flo & Eddie had the right, under state law, to sue Sirius XM for airing the tracks without paying them.
Read More
Last week, the House Judiciary Committee issued a press release on its website related to its voting on an immigration bill. While others debate the merits of the bill itself, what seemed to capture people’s attention was the release’s extensive use of animated reaction gifs, consisting of clips taken from copyrighted works.
Read More
As EFF has noted, a troubling bill has been making its way through the Florida state legislature. The bill, with versions in both the state House and Senate, would require anyone “dealing in…the electronic dissemination of commercial recordings or audiovisual works” to post their “true and correct name, physical address, and email or telephone number” on their site.
Read More
The hot takes on the Blurred Lines copyright infringement suit are out, and you may have already seen them. The verdict is “bad news for music;” it’s “legally and musically…a disaster;” its particular use of experts in trying to draw the legally necessary distinction between the musical composition and the sound recording was a complete mess. I read these and nodded along with their analysis, for the most part. But a further, nerdy question still burned:
Read More