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Funniest/Most Insightful Comments Of The Week At Techdirt

Our first place winner for insightful this week is Mason Wheeler with a response to the idea that bogus DMCA takedowns are a tiny exception rather than the rule:

Nope. The truth is actually exactly the opposite of what you just said. According to Google, 99.95% of all DMCA notices are not only bogus, but one specific flavor of bogus. Everything else (including all of the other kinds of bogus DMCA notices!) is included in the last 0.05%. Notices targeting legitimate infringement are so rare as to be statistically almost nonexistent.

Legitimate takedowns truly are the anomaly; the DMCA takedown program is used entirely (or close enough as makes no difference) for abuse, and therefore needs to be done away with.

In second place, we’ve got That One Guy tackling Axel Voss’s notion that maybe YouTube shouldn’t exist:

Let the purge begin

If ‘it can be used for X, therefore it was created for X, and needs to be treated as though it’s only used for X’ is the idea he wants to run with then forget just gutting the internet, time to take a chainsaw to other industries too.

Cars can be used to commit crimes, therefore they need to be treated as though their only use is for committing crimes and outlawed.
The roads that cars travel on can be used to facilitate crimes…
Phones can be used…
The mail can be used…
Stores selling pretty much anything can result in crimes…

“Everyone has these obligations. They have created a business model with the property of other people – on copyright protected works.”

Funny thing is, he’s technically correct here, just not in the grossly dishonest way he intends it as. Yes, platforms like YT are built upon copyright protected works, because barring public domain works everything is copyright protected, and when someone uploads a work technically YT and the like are benefiting thanks to ‘property of other people’, generally the same person who uploaded the work.

He’s trying to conflate two very different things here, infringing works that wouldn’t fall under fair use and aren’t owned by the person who uploaded them, and works which would fall under fair use or are owned by the person who uploaded them, and acting as though the sites were created for the former rather than the latter.

At best he comes out yet again looking like an ignorant buffoon, but far more likely I’d say is that this is yet another example where he’ll say whatever he things will benefit him the most at any given moment, though he may have overstepped himself here, as making clear that YT is definitely in the cross-hairs is likely to cause a notable backlash.

For editor’s choice on the insightful side, we start out with Michael Barclay raising an important point about the fair use ruling for a Dr. Seuss-Star Trek mashup:

Oracle v. Google causing mischief again

This case is another example of how dangerous and harmful the Oracle v. Google opinions are. The district court in this case is in the Ninth Circuit, and there are plenty of Ninth Circuit fair use decisions to guide its district courts. Since those cases apparently weren’t working for the plaintiff, it instead cited the Federal Circuit’s Oracle opinions and argued that they should control the case.

What’s worse here is that the district court didn’t reject the plaintiff’s argument out of hand. The district court should have said, “Oracle isn’t binding, rather Ninth Circuit law is binding.” Instead, the district court treated Oracle as controlling law, but was able to distinguish it on the facts.

If the Supreme Court doesn’t review the Oracle decisions, we can expect them to be cited in many future cases, instead of Ninth Circuit law, and in cases where Oracle can’t be meaningfully distinguished on its facts.

(Disclosure: I’m counsel of record on an amicus brief asking the Supreme Court to review Oracle v. Google.)

Next, we’ve got cpt kangarooski with a little copyright lesson:

I’m a lawyer.

I can tell you that this:

Queen Anne establishes copyright to protect authors FROM a public that was stealing their work.

isn’t true. Anne herself was not known to be particularly involved in the passage of the law. It’s just named that because she was Queen at the time. It was the particularly vigorous Parliament of the day that did it. And it wasn’t at all to protect authors from the public; the public didn’t own printing pressses. It was to impose order on the publishers (who had lost their monopoly in the 1690s) while not restoring their power to what it had been. This meant vesting rights in someone else, and authors were a good prospect for that. It didn’t help authors much — they still tended to get ripped off by publishers as they do to the present day. It also helped the public by establishing the public domain and limiting the scope and duration of the rights Parliament doled out.

Even the American version of copyright law uses this limited window to ensure that content creators are compensated

Bzzt, wrong. No one ensures compensation; most works have no economic value whatsoever, and of the remainder most have no copyright-related economic value. Authors go without compensation all the time; why do you think there’s a stereotype of starving artists? Copyright simply directs some of the revenues associated with a work to the copyright holder. How much revenue there is and who gets shares along the way is not guaranteed. Usually it’s zero or thereabouts.

copyright just isn’t doing the job for which it was intended, due to piracy, which is why we now have things like Article 13.

Nah, that’s bullshit.

Over on the funny side, our first place winner is crade with some blunt sarcasm in response to a comment about the Yelp-for-MAGAs app being taken down due to security flaws:

You heard wrong. It was actually due to a left-wing conspiracy to suppress conservative speech.

In second place, we’ve got an anonymous take on the Oh The Places You’ll Boldly Go mashup, and another Suess-Lovecraft mashup:

Just be glad the Cthulhu Estate isn’t angry with you. The Seuss estate at least has to work within the bounds of the law. The other side won’t even bother staying within the bounds of reality.

For editor’s choice on the funny side, why not start with Bruce C. offering one more Cthulhu joke:

They probably called it that to avoid the inevitable lawsuit if they called it “Horton hears a Cthulhu”.

Finally, we’ve got an anonymous headline for the online reputation management company that brags about absuing copyright to get bad reviews taken down:

Work at home lawyer uses this one trick to get anything you want taken off the internet! Judges hate him!

That’s all for this week, folks!

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Author: Leigh Beadon

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