This Video Explains How Patent Trolls Came to Be
If you listen to our news broadcasts here, you are very likely to hear stories about patent trolls and “copywrong” as Lumpy uses to refer to the current state of intellectual property law. It has reached the ridiculous point where trolls are laying claims to broad matters such as playlists and podcasting. This is about as logical as patenting the alphabet. The video below, explains how old law and new tech combined to create software patent trolls.
Disclaimer – This Post is Mostly Editorial
While I do not endorse, encourage or in any shape or form endorse piracy, I extend that “unendorsement” to include any illegal activity. I also consider illegal search and seizure and a lack of due process equally illegal. I also believe one is innocent until proven guilty.
You are free to form your own opinion about Kim Dotcom and this entire MegaUpload issue. I am pretty sure that some illegal activity did occur at MegaUpload. However, I do not believe that all of the activity was illegal, nor do I have any information as to whether most of the activity was illegal. Nonetheless, by shutting down and entire server, I am certain people who used the site completely legitimately were harmed as well.
Yeah, you read that right. I can’t make this stuff up. GoDaddy, has actually been granted a patent for just what the headline states! I am baffled at what is so unique and novel about this particular idea. Honestly, who wouldn’t promote their new web site via social sites and networks? For that matter who hasn’t done so already?
2012.06.04 – Tech Net News and Opinion
Welcome to this week’s episode of Tech Net News and Opinion. This week we accidentally/intentionally did things a bit differently. For those of you who have been asking for more news and less music, you got it. Brian, Knowles, Meshelly, Knunez (iPhone at Geekshed), OmniDragon and Lumpy start and end this week’s show with music but the rest is all news talk.
Remember listeners and readers, if you wish to participate, the way to do so is to get on over to the Geekshed IRC Network and join us in #indienation. We do the news live almost every Monday from 8-10 PM EST. (As a general rule, if a Monday is a holiday in the USA, we do NOT do the news.) If you have items you think we should cover as news, shoot us an email at email@example.com or tweet us @indienationfm.
Tech Net News and Opinion – Episode 007 – 2012.01.30
In this week’s episode of Tech Net News and Opinion, we discuss, Newt Gingrich being sued for IP law violations, a super hot X-ray laser, capturing Wi-Fi passwords and fake projects at Apple. So tune in enjoy the music and our chat about the various news items.
Google did a “black out” doodle and Wikipedia shut down to bring attention to the two bills now making the rounds at Capital Hill. I got a few emails and one phone call, asking me if I intended to shut down Indie Nation as part of the protest. Frankly, I didn’t see any point to doing that, so know we were open for business on “American Censorship Day”.
Google Music Launches
Although pretty much everywhere, I caught the news of this via my EnGadget RSS feed. Google Music has launched and offered over 8 million tracks the first day. The selection of music will soon increase to over 13 million.
While the music program has been known and in beta, there was speculation as to which and how many labels would be on board, EnGadget reports that 3 major labels and 23 independents have signed on.
In conversation, we discussed how the MPAA likely cost Hollywood more than Torrents, MP3 vs Physical Media, why do people pirate and how these items relate.
Motorola Approve Google PurchaseFollowing up on recent old news, more specifically the recent “Google bought Motorola” stories. First off, to clarify what I have too often heard, Google did not buy Motorola in entirety, specifically only Motorola Mobility. In Lumpy’s opinion, likely for patents to defend the Droid phone.
They announced sticking to a “hands off” approach regarding operations. The purchase, however likely, needed final approval from the “actual” owners of Motorola.
According to a post at Physorg.com, Google’s purchase of Motorola Mobility was given final approval by the Motorola stock holders. The deal was valued at 12.5 billion dollars. Of note however, though no problem is expected, the regulators has still not officially approved this purchase.
RIAA Does Not Like The Used Digital Music Sale Business
This is one we may wish to file under “no surprise”… After all other than there outdated-make-no-sense-lobby-and-sue-to-make-it-our-way business model what part of the music business does the music industry actually love? This is the same organization that tried to stop 8-tracks, cassettes and used record stores for they were all certainly going to destroy the music business.
Thanks to the ingenious strategy of “sue em all” and total alienation of their customers, the Racketeering Idiots Association of Absurdity has kept this dying business alive for decades. Unfortunately, when they are done paying the organization’s officers, legal fees and lawyers, there is nothing left for the artists.
Slashdot points to a few good articles relevant to ReDigi, a company which is claiming to re-sell digital music. The RIAA has sent ReDigi a letter, more or less telling them to stop. This one should be an interesting one to follow. Will it reverse the decision of Vernor v. Autodesk, Inc. or will the industries stance of “first sale” win?
Unfortunately, with both the US legal system and the RIAA involved, one has no clue what a court may decide. While I am not too sure, “re-selling” digital media is actually legal. The case referenced was more specifically involving software not music… software purchased and physically resold. As for music, sooner or later a line must be drawn in the litigious sand that fills the litter box of the current war over content, distribution and ownership.
SOPA Not Well Liked By Many
Mike Masnick of TechDirt posted that many have been expressing a dislike for SOPA. The “Stop On-line Piracy Act” or H.R. 3261 is currently in committee hearings. One of the more popular news stories which came out of the public reaction to this potential law was “Free Justin Beiber”. The bill would make on-line streaming copyright offenses a felony, with up to 5 years prison time. Ironically, Beiber sent a cease and dessist order to Free Beiber which was started by Fight for the Future.
The TechDirt article lists the following as opposing this bill:
- Hacker News who has actually put up a site so that you can send representatives a letter.
- The ACLU regarding free speech issues
- The American Library Association as part of the Library Copyright Alliance
- Association of Research Libraries (PDF of letter) as part of the Library Copyright Alliance
- Human Rights Watch
- New America Foundation’s Open Technology Initiative
- The Competitive Enterprise Institute over due process concerns
- EFF – Has many articles on this topic
- Public Knowledge
- Consumers Union
- Consumer Federation of America
- US PIRG
- The Brookings Institution
- ESET over security concerns
The EFF lists even more who oppose this bill, “including Facebook, Google, Twitter, eBay, Yahoo, AOL and Mozilla”.
The process of approving this bill has also come under scrutiny, TechDirt discusses that the committee is perceived as biased and, add to that, those opposed to the bill have not been permitted to attend the hearings. The EFF has more on those who are not permitted to attend and states that many of those who are permitted to attend actually helped draft the bill.
An additional link was also brought up during the live discussion:
If you would like to participate in this show’s live discussion, contact us at 818-81-INDIE or firstname.lastname@example.org.
- Cautious Optimism Follows SOPA Hearings: Don’t Get Cocky (readwriteweb.com)
- SOPA copyright bill draws fire (news.cnet.com)
- TechFast: SOPA Backlash, Google’s Music Store, Tablet Wars (techland.time.com)
- Stop the Stop Online Piracy Act Now (dailyfinance.com)
- Stop the Stop Online Piracy Act Now (fool.com)
- ISPs versus SOPA: Anti-piracy bill could force severe privacy-invading measures (zdnet.com)
- Google Music debuts, with downloads and sharing (live blog) (news.cnet.com)
- Google Music debuts, with downloads and sharing (live blog) (news.cnet.com)
- How SOPA would affect you: FAQ (news.cnet.com)
- Tech Giants Take Out Newspaper Ad Blasting Net Censorship Proposition (ostatic.com)
- Google Buys Motorola (indienation.fm)
- RIAA goes after ReDigi for selling “used” iTunes tracks (electronista.com)
- T-Mobile may be part of Google Music launch (news.cnet.com)
Former Defender Now Goes After Those He Defended
A post over at Torrent Freak reports that a DC attorney, Mike Meier has changed sides. The attorney was once known as a bit torrent defense attorney. He was even listed as a defense attorney at the EFF site.
Another Lawsuit, to Pay for a Lawsuit
I have often said that the current music industry is a dinosaur, many have. I often use terms such as “new media order” and “new business model“. It is obvious that I feel the way the big boys play is obsolete and I am not alone in that feeling.
Arr Maties! We Got Yar Trademark!
I think this one rather ironic. An article over at Torrent Freak brings to our attention that amidst all the confusion regarding the now defunct Pirate Bay, the trademark was left unprotected. While the article states that a gaming company plans to resurrect the site, it seems they may have to do it with out the famous trademark of a pirate ship.
Just in case you just crawled out from under a rock, TechCrunch (and the rest of the world) reports that Google has dropped 12.5 billions dollars and bought Motorola. The entire Internet is buzzing about why, what and and whatever but ARS Technica likely has it right.. they needed the patents. It is rather sad that patent trolls have turned net survival into a matter of preemptive strikes but in my opinion that is what it is.