Professor Geist's regular Toronto Star Law Bytes column (Toronto Star version, HTML backup article, homepage version) examines the growing tension between privacy and intellectual property rights. The column assesses two recent examples — RIAA subpoenas against alleged file sharers and the brewing dispute over the reliability of WHOIS information.
Post Tagged with: "copyright"
When governments began to stake out their Internet policy positions in the mid-1990s, there was general agreement among countries such as Canada, the United States, Australia, as well as the European Union, on the wisdom of adopting a self-regulatory approach led by the private sector.
Many online music fans reflect on July 26, 2000, as the day the music almost died. On that day a U.S. court ruled that Napster, the file-sharing phenomenon that took the world by storm, was engaged in copyright infringement and should be shut down. While the service survived for nearly 18 months longer, that initial decision clearly marked the beginning of the end for Napster.
Few Internet law issues generate more controversy than concerns surrounding Internet jurisdiction. In recent months, courts in both Australia and the United States have grappled with the issue in high-profile cases. The first involved an allegedly defamatory Wall Street Journal article about Joseph Gutnick, an Australian businessman who chose to sue in Australia rather than in the United States, where the newspaper is based. The second involved a copyright infringement suit launched in a California court against Kazaa, a leading online peer-to-peer file sharing service owned by an Australian company and incorporated in the Pacific nation of Vanuatu.
Earlier this month the federal government delivered its much-anticipated Speech from the Throne, setting its legislative and policy agenda for the years ahead. Several days later, amid far less fanfare, it released a second legislative and policy agenda, which is must-reading for those concerned with copyright and the Internet because it establishes the government's priorities for copyright reform for at least the next five years.