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This Week In Techdirt History: May 20th – 26th

Five Years Ago

This week in 2013, we watched plenty of copyright hysteria as a trade group insisted that accommodating the deaf and blind would mean “casting aside” copyright, a Swedish prosecutor tried to label the Pirate Bay’s domain registrar as an “accomplice”, and all the major Hollywood studios sent bogus DMCA notices over a documentary about said Bay. Meanwhile, we were watching the TPP negotiations over the contentious intellectual property chapter, a key legal fight over DMCA abuse (while the RIAA continued whining that safe harbors are broken), and the effort in Congress to fix the anti-circumvention provisions.

Ten Years Ago

Five years earlier in 2008, we were already talking about how far behind the mainstream media was when it came to the DMCA and DRM. We took a look at how the RIAA and MPAA helped make The Pirate Bay even more popular, while the MPAA was getting people to settle lawsuits over simply linking to content, and Hollywood was working hard on making sure set-top boxes suck.

This was also the week that we got our very first leaked glimpse at something that would become a huge topic in years to come: ACTA, which at the time we called The Pirate Bay Criminalization Treaty.

Fifteen Years Ago

This week in 2003, worlds collided in an odd way as Roxio, the company that acquired the Napster name, made a deal to buy Pressplay, the music studios’ crappy download service. Meanwhile, a Spanish site was claiming to offer legal music downloads, which as you can imagine the industry didn’t quite see the same way. In the mean time, the music industry got into its head that a website listing out legal services was the key to ending piracy, while Disney was preparing to offer its own video-on-demand service, and Jack Valenti was busy rewriting history as usual. And, to bring us back around to the very first link in this history post, it was this week in 2003 that we first started hearing about the blind and deaf fighting back against the DMCA — something we optimistically thought might actually be effective, but that was giving the industry too much credit, apparently.

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Author: Leigh Beadon

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