Items tagged "Enforcement"

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Last Week’s Highlights

October 18, 2010 Enforcement , IP3 , MVPD , Set-Top Box

Too busy last week to follow the ins and outs of technology and telecom policy? Don’t worry—we’ve got you covered. Here are last week’s highlights.

Public Knowledge hosted its seventh annual IP3 Awards. As one reporter put it, “scads of technology and telecommunications professionals gathered on Capitol Hill” for the event. This year, we had four winners: Pamela Samuelson for her work in Information Policy, Susan Crawford for Internet Protocol, Michael Geist for Intellectual Property, and Nina Paley also for Intellectual Property.

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Near Final ACTA Text Released

October 6, 2010 ACTA , Anti-circumvention , Enforcement

The United States Trade Representative (USTR) and its negotiating partners today released the near-final draft of the Anti-Counterfeiting Trade Agreement (ACTA). This text, while similar to the last draft leaked in August, has a few notable changes, most of which make the text far less problematic.

First, the provision requiring Internet Service Providers (ISPs) to disclose the identity of alleged infringers now contains a balancing provision. It states that procedures to disclose such information “shall be implemented in a manner that avoids the creation of barriers to legitimate activity, including electronic commerce, and, consistent with each Party’s law, preserves fundamental principles such as freedom of expression, fair process, and privacy.”

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Blogging Service is Cut Off From the Internet: Weaknesses in Content Access are Illuminated

July 28, 2010 Enforcement , Public Safety

The blogging service Blogetery was recently cut off from the Internet by its web hosting service.  As a result, blog creators and readers lost access to an estimated 73,000 blogs.  Why Blogetery was cut off from the Internet is not clear.  The New York Times' Bits Blog originally reported that the cut off resulted from an FBI request, made after the FBI discovered links to Al Qaeda bomb-making instructions on one of the blogs on the Blogetery service.  The web host

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When Banning Works Better than Blocking: Bill Proposes to Make Prison Cell (Phones) Contraband

July 22, 2010 Competition , Enforcement , Jamming , Mobile Communication , Wireless

The Associated Press brings us the news that both house of Congress have passed parallel bills to ban the use of cell phones and other wireless devices in federal prisons. The bill, S. 1749, was introduced to curb the illicit use of cell phones within prisons to conduct criminal business from inside prisons.

This solution stands in stark contrast to one that had been shopped around not too long ago by vendors of cell blocking tech, where prisons would install jammers to block cellular signals in and around prisons. Fortunately, instead of trotting out a technological solution (with its concomitant negative effects on legitimate users) to what is a broader problem, this bill attempts to address the problem by using tools already in place within the system.

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A Teachable Moment From Viacom’s “Coulton-gate”

June 9, 2010 ACTA , Enforcement , Filtering , Three Strikes

Video bloggers VLOG Brothers posted this entry about SpikeTV, a subsidiary of Viacom, violating musician Jonathan Coulton‘s Creative Commons License for one of his songs (I’ve included the video blog below). Briefly, Coulton has released a video of his song Flickr under a Creative Commons license allowing noncommercial use and requiring attribution. SpikeTV grabbed the video and played commercials before it and associated with while playing.

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Should Customs decide what’s a circumvention device?

May 24, 2010 Anti-circumvention , DMCA , DRM , Enforcement

The Digital Millennium Copyright Act (DMCA) is a complex and highly controversial statute, and the anti-circumvention provisions in section 1201 are some of its most complex and controversial components. Despite more than a decade’s worth of judicial interpretation, there remain plenty of unsettled questions about just what constitutes circumvention and just what constitutes a protected technological measure. And what we do know for sure makes a strong case that the anti-circumvention provisions are overbroad and have significant and harmful unintended consequences.

Yet the Senate is considering a bill that could significantly ramp up enforcement of section 1201 and exacerbate those unintended consequences. Among other things, the bill would give US Customs and Border Protection (CBP) the authority to decide for itself whether merchandise is a prohibited circumvention device, and thus to seize the merchandise at the border.

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LimeWire Liable for Inducement, Vicarious Copyright Infringement

May 12, 2010 Enforcement , Filtering , P2P , Piracy , RIAA

Today, a federal district court in New York found LimeWire liable for inducing copyright infringement and vicarious copyright infringement. The court’s decision, at least on those aspects of the case, may not be terribly surprising, given the precedent set in earlier cases like Grokster, Aimster, and Napster. But a few details of the court’s ruling deserve further mention.

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USTR Special 301 report: Business as Usual

May 5, 2010 ACTA , Enforcement , Special 301

On April 30, this year the Office of the United States Trade Representative (USTR) came out with this its Special 301 Report. The Report is disappointing in many respects. Despite unprecedented public input into the process and calls by public interest commenters to consider the importance of balance in copyright law, the report continues to promote a view of intellectual property (IP) law that tramples on user rights. By providing vague explanations for countries’ placement on watch lists and seemingly placing reliance on unsubstantiated and questionable rights-holder assertions, it completely ignores our calls for transparency and accountability.

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Finally Some Transparency: ACTA Negotiators Announce Release of Text

April 16, 2010 ACTA , Enforcement , Transparency

The United States Trade Representative (USTR) has announced today that it will be making the text of the Anti-Counterfeiting Trade Agreement (ACTA) available to the public on April 21st. Here is the portion of the press release that talks about the latest round of negotiations in New Zealand and the decision to release the text:

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American University calls for papers on ACTA and Special 301

March 30, 2010 ACTA , Enforcement

The American Universities’ Program on Information Justice and Intellectual Property (PIJIP) is calling for a series of working papers on the public interest impacts of intellectual property enforcement covering a wide range of issues including the Special 301 process and the Anti-Counterfeiting Trade Agreement (ACTA). While a lot has been written about ACTA’s secretive process and its Internet chapter, PIJIP’s initiative may lead to a much more comprehensive analysis of ACTA particularly, and the enforcement agenda generally.

As the American University’s website specifies, the papers should be 8-12 pages long and geared towards policy makers. Accepted papers will be presented at a workshop in Washington D.C. If you are interested in writing a paper, please contact Sean Flynn, Associate Director, PIJIP at pijip@wcl.american.edu. Abstracts should be submitted to pijip@wcl.american.edu by April 15.

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