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Copyright Law

  1. Freddie Mercury-Inspired Gorilla Statue Removed for Infringing Copyright

    This is why we can't have nice things, like a gorilla statue painted to look like the frontman from Queen.

    Look, copyright law -- I know you mean well, and you were designed to help protect artists and innovators. But when you do things like rob the world of the glory that is a gorilla statue painted to resemble Queen frontman Freddie Mercury, you've gone too far. This is why people avoid you at parties, copyright law. Because you hate fun.

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  2. Court Rules That Embedding A Video Is Not Copyright Infringement

    The Seventh Circuit Court of Appeals ruled yesterday that a site that embeds copyrighted videos from another site is not committing copyright infringement. The court case between Flava Works, Inc. and myVidster.com came to a close after this ruling was passed in favor of the defendant, myVidster. The court also ruled that watching an infringing video does not constitute copyright infringement.

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  3. Judge: Custom Batmobiles Are Subject to Copyright

    where does he get those wonderful toys

    A judge in California has ruled that custom Batmobiles, like the ones made by Gotham Garage owner Mark Towles and owned by toddler pop music sensation Justin Bieber, are subject to copyright law because cars, apparently, do not fall under the "useful articles" exception. I have no idea what this really means for people who spend their money on Batmobiles, but if it means trouble for Justin Bieber, then that is more fun for everyone.

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  4. The Real Reason We Don’t Need SOPA or PIPA: We Already Have Broken Copyright Law, DMCA

    Now don't get me wrong, there are awful, awful aspects to both SOPA and PIPA. The prospect of DNS blocking is egregious censorship. The prospect of cutting off funds and ad revenue to "infringers" without due process is egregious. Even without those provisions, though, we still don't need or want SOPA or PIPA. Why? Because we already have dangerously broken copyright law: The Digital Millennium Copyright Act.

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  5. Marvel Comics Listed As A SOPA Supporter

    BAD IDEAS FROM SMART PEOPLE

    The Stop Online Piracy Act (SOPA), or Protect-IP Act as it's called in the House of Representatives, has been the talk of the internet-town (and regular towns) for  months. Once everyone realized the implications this particular bill, they got extremely nervous and concerned phone calls and letters started pouring into Washington. The matter is still waiting to be settled when Congress returns from their winter recess but a list has surfaced showing particular companies who are in support of the controversial bill. And one of them is Marvel Entertainment. 

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  6. Latest SOPA Defense: Sweden’s Apparently Non-Existent Yet Thriving Film Industry

    Rights of Passage

    The lawmakers on Capitol Hill are running out of ways to get people on board to vote for the U.S. Senate's highly controversial Stop Online Piracy Act (known as the Protect-IP Act in the House of Representatives), so now they're claiming that those scurvy-ridden internet pirates have completely obliterated the film industries of several countries, including Sweden. Sweden, a country that has apparently not produced any feature films since the advent of the internet ... except for, I don't know, Let the Right One In, the entire original Millennium Trilogy, you know. Nothing anyone's ever heard of ... if they are living under a Washington Monument-sized rock. Or they're just lying. But here's the good news: one lawmaker has a great idea to make this bill seem really unsavory to support: porn.

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  7. 24-Year Old Woman Becomes the Youngest Member of the European Parliament, Also Second Pirate

    Buckle Buckle Swash Swash

    Back in 2009, Amelia Andersdotter, then 21 years old, ran for a seat in the European Parliament as a member of Sweden's Pirate Party -- and that June, she won. Now 24, Andersdotter is finally about to take her seat after years of bureaucratic delays, becoming the second member of the Pirate Party to become a MEP and the youngest person ever to do so. Among the major parts of her platform: a united Europe and a focus on telecommunications.

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  8. What the Deal Was With Tumblr Today (And A Few Other Sites): The Protect IP Act

    Rights of Passage

    To the left is a screencap of Tumblr from earlier today, and you're probably curious to know what it's about. Well, we're here to tell you, and you're not going to like it. And not like "Kristen Stewart might be in Akira" "not like it." Like "the United States government is taking cues from Iran and China and wants to put people in prison for five years for linking to a copyrighted site" "not like it." In the name of protecting "prosperity, creativity, entrepreneurship, and innovation," there is a bill currently being debated in Congress, the PROTECT-IP Act and its House version, the Stop Internet Piracy Act (SOPA), concerning censorship of the internet that intends to leave legal windows open to prosecute regular users like you, me, and your Aunt Ethel, who just wanted to show you what her cat was doing on YouTube and happened to be playing the soundtrack to Phantom of the Opera in the background. This is a matter of taking freedom of expression out of the hands of the people and giving it to corporations, who can then turn to all their consumers and say, "We have PR firms and advertising agencies to tell people about our TV show/album/movie -- stop linking to it or we'll have you pay for it." And the worst part is that anyone who tries to read this thing in order to better understand it will find themselves even more confused -- and possibly in serious trouble.

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  9. Who Holds the Copyright on Photographs Taken by Monkeys?

    Rights of Passage

    By now you've probably all seen the above picture, a self-portrait taken by a macaque monkey after it stole the camera from award winning nature photographer David Slater. Now that the photograph has spread through the internet like wildfire, questions are being raised about who legally holds copyright over the photo--Slater, or the monkey?

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