RIAA Lawsuits

Well, the other shoe has dropped. The Recording Industry Association of America has announced that it will sue individuals who are engaging in unauthorized file sharing. We can expect hundreds of lawsuits by the end of the summer. Of course, everyone is commenting on this, usually either with outrage or grudging, fatalistic acceptance. I might as well put in my two cents too. Especially since there are certain aspects of this case that have not been sufficiently discussed…

Photographing Starbucks

A story, via BoingBoing, originally from Lawrence Lessig, reports that it is not permitted to take photos in a Starbucks, “because this was an absolute violation of Starbuck’s copyright of their entire ‘environment’–that everything in the place is protected and cannot be used without Starbuck’s express permission.” Lessig mischievously ponders: “I wonder what would happen if hundreds of people from around the country experimented this holiday weekend by taking pictures at their local Starbucks…” I’ll try it this afternoon, and post the results here.

Quoted Without Comment

“Representative John Carter, (R-Texas), suggested that college students would stop downloading if some were prosecuted and received sentences of 33 months or longer, like the defendants in the DOJ’s Operation Buccaneer. ‘I think it’d be a good idea to go out and actually bust a couple of these college kids,’ Carter said. ‘If you want to see college kids duck and run, you let them read the papers and somebody’s got a 33-month sentence in the federal penitentiary for downloading copyrighted materials.’ ” (from Yahoo News)