Online Censorship Goes To UK

Motion Picture Association of America won a test case against British Telecom (BT) to restrict access to a site accused of providing links to download movies without authorization. The interesting fact is that the site causing the problem, Newzbin, is not distributing copyright infringing files but merely giving links. As Newzbin says, they are the Google of Usenet.

The victory for the big Hollywood studios is believed to be the first case in the UK in which an internet provider has been forced to block access to a website under the 1988 Copyright, Design and Patents Act.

Details of how the block will be done by BT are not clear. The judge ordered BT to block access to every IP address associated with and its subdomains but experience says that such blocks can be circumvented. Even the judge writes “I agree with counsel for the Studios that the order would be justified even if it only prevented access to Newzbin2 by a minority of users“.

What’s most interesting though is that more studies are proving that file sharing is good for artists. Former Google CIO  Douglas C Merrill revealed that his profiling research at the label found that LimeWire pirates were iTunes’ biggest customers. Merrill said similar things when he was President of Digital Business at EMI Records, that poached him from Google. He lasted less than one year: fired for stating the obvious?

Article first published as Online Censorship Goes To UK on Technorati.

Le leggi sotto dettatura degli USA

I cablogrammi di Wikileaks confermano che in Spagna l’inasprimento oltre misura delle pene per violazioni del diritto d’autore sono state scritto sotto dettatura dell’ambasciata USA. Un articolo di El Pais racconta passo passo come gli USA abbiano forzato la mano al parlamento spagnolo per far approvare una nuova legge che criminalizza la violazione di diritto d’autore, marchi e brevetti (il tipo di legge per cui se scarichi illecitamente una canzone di Marco Carta passi meno anni in galera che se lo riempi di botte).

Il sospetto ce l’avevamo in molti da tempo, ma vederlo così nero su bianco fa comunque molta impressione. Allora, grazie WikiLeaks.

Help EFF stop copyright bullyies intimidating children

Are you looking for a good cause to donate to? Introducing a new program ofthe Electronic Frontier Foundation to counterbalance the intimidating tactics used by the copyright bullies, like MPAA and RIAA. The bullies go to schools spreading their perception that copying is bad for society: their vision is one where kids that help each other sharing information are criminals. EFF, instead,

knows that the creators and innovators of tomorrow don’t need more intimidation. They need solid, accurate information to make smart choices about how to use new technologies. That’s why EFF launced the free, Creative Commons-licensed “Teaching Copyright” curriculum and website to help educators explore copyright issues in their classrooms.

via Electronic Frontier Foundation:.