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Time Denies Issuing DMCA Over Obama Joker Image 324

Posted by timothy
from the just-like-the-beginning-of-the-dark-knight dept.
An anonymous reader writes "Last week Slashdot posted on the Flickr censorship case where Flickr removed the controversial Obama/Joker image from their site. A representative from Flickr claimed that they only removed the image because they received a DMCA takedown notice over the image and then accused the press and blogosphere of being 'makey uppey,' subsequently locking the thread where Flickr users were complaining about the takedown. But now it appears that Time, DC Comics, and the photographer of the original photograph used to make the parody image are all denying having issued Flickr a takedown notice. Flickr was asked who issued the notice by the Los Angeles Times and told the Times that they were not able to provide that information. The original artist says Flickr has not told him who filed it either, despite the fact that Yahoo has in the past provided the information to people when DMCA takedown requests are issued. So if Time didn't file the DMCA notice, and DC Comics didn't file the DMCA notice, and the original photographer did not file the DMCA notice, then who exactly did?"
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Time Denies Issuing DMCA Over Obama Joker Image

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  • I pointed out the actual reasons given [slashdot.org] last week. Go read that comment if you don't want to RTFA; consider it your Cliff's notes to what is actually happening.
  • Re:Well.... (Score:1, Informative)

    by Anonymous Coward on Wednesday August 26, 2009 @05:50PM (#29208813)

    The entire reason for the DMCA takedown notices is so that the copyright holder can get something taken down *fast*. If the user thinks that the takedown is in error, the user can challenge it, then Flickr/Google/Whomever can put the content back up and if the takedown issuer still wants it down they have to take the case to the courts.

  • Re:Actionable? (Score:5, Informative)

    by Spazmania (174582) on Wednesday August 26, 2009 @06:06PM (#29209033) Homepage

    Er.. Technically it doesn't "encourage" hosts to assume infringement so much as it -requires- hosts to assume the legitimacy of the takedown notice. If they fail to, they lose immunity. That's why the notice gets promptly forwarded to the user against whom the takedown is perform and its also why the user gets to send a "put back" notice which -requires- the host to restore the removed material until such a time as ordered to remove it by a court.

  • Re:Actionable? (Score:3, Informative)

    by Psyborgue (699890) on Wednesday August 26, 2009 @06:30PM (#29209403) Homepage Journal
    Should be modded informative. Service providers wanting to maintain safe harbor immunity have to take something down if they recieve a DMCA. Section 512 of the DMCA [chillingeffects.org]. It has some cool caveats, though such as:

    (f) Misrepresentations. - Any person who knowingly materially misrepresents under this section - * (1) that material or activity is infringing, or * (2) that material or activity was removed or disabled by mistake or misidentification, shall be liable for any damages, including costs and attorneys' fees, incurred by the alleged infringer, by any copyright owner or copyright owner's authorized licensee, or by a service provider, who is injured by such misrepresentation, as the result of the service provider relying upon such misrepresentation in removing or disabling access to the material or activity claimed to be infringing, or in replacing the removed material or ceasing to disable access to it.

  • by Tuoqui (1091447) on Wednesday August 26, 2009 @06:41PM (#29209571) Journal

    Unfortunately not. FOIA only deals with the government from what I understand not private businesses.

  • Re:I admit (Score:3, Informative)

    by Psyborgue (699890) on Wednesday August 26, 2009 @06:53PM (#29209739) Homepage Journal
    There are provisions in the DMCA to deal with that:

    (f) Misrepresentations. - Any person who knowingly materially misrepresents under this section - * (1) that material or activity is infringing, or * (2) that material or activity was removed or disabled by mistake or misidentification, shall be liable for any damages, including costs and attorneys' fees, incurred by the alleged infringer, by any copyright owner or copyright owner's authorized licensee, or by a service provider, who is injured by such misrepresentation, as the result of the service provider relying upon such misrepresentation in removing or disabling access to the material or activity claimed to be infringing, or in replacing the removed material or ceasing to disable access to it.

  • by pluther (647209) <pluther.usa@net> on Wednesday August 26, 2009 @07:04PM (#29209891) Homepage

    ...how much more about the government does it need to be?

    FOIA is about getting information from the government.

    Unless the government claims they hold the copyright to the image, and they themselves issued the takedown notice, they're not going to have any information about it, therefore nothing can be obtained through a FOIA request.

    And, if they did issue the takedown notice, they're not admitting it. Therefore, again, nothing can be obtained through a FOIA request.

  • by gnasher719 (869701) on Wednesday August 26, 2009 @07:18PM (#29210037)

    What they parties denying any DMCA takedown notices aren't saying is that they didn't threaten any potential action under the DMCA. It is just as likely that Flickr was responding to a threat of a DMCA takedown notice. If this is the case, then no one is telling any lies except for Flickr... and even in that case it's not a complete lie. But they do need to tell precisely who demanded that the material be removed or else they will lose in the public opinion of them.

    You can't threaten with a DMCA takedown notice. A DMCA takedown notice is absolutely no problem for an ISP, all they have to do is check whether all the necessary elements are there (what material is allegedly copied, where can the copy be found, who is the copyright owner, who is its agent, how can the agent be contacted), take down the material, send a copy of the request to the person uploading the material, that's it. How would that be threatening?

  • by Anonymous Coward on Wednesday August 26, 2009 @07:49PM (#29210305)

    If a website with common carrier status under the DMCA receives a takedown notice, investigation is a matter for the legal system only. Assuming the DMCA is properly formatted and valid, it has to come down or you risk losing that status.. It is valid if it includes:

    1) An electronic signature
    2) Source of original copyrighted work
    3) Location of infringing work
    4) Contact information
    5) A statement that you have a good faith belief that use of the material in the manner complained of is not authorized by the copyright owner
    6) A statement that the information in the copyright infringement notice is accurate, and under penalty of perjury, that you are authorized to act on behalf of the owner

    We cannot question if the owner is who they say they are. If the takedown exists, we have to take it down. Assuming they actually got the takedown, Flickr isn't the bad guy here.

  • by Mr. Underbridge (666784) on Wednesday August 26, 2009 @08:12PM (#29210529)

    Uhm, you do realise that most of the mainstream media in the US is own by Rupert Murdoch, and other wealthy Republicans?

    Not even close to true. He doesn't own ABC, CBS, or NBC. He does own Fox, one of four major networks. On cable, you have Fox News owned by Murdoch (very Republican-oriented, granted), CNN owned by Ted Turner (debatable), but the rest of the news channels aren't close to right-leaning in general. For newspapers, he owns the WSJ, which is the only prominent right-leaning paper, with the Washington Post and New York Times being the two most prominent newspapers in the country. They also happen to be *extremely* left.

    So your big Republican conspiracy is 1 out of 4 major networks, one or two major cable news channels, and one major newspaper. That's a lot more than those that are clearly left-leaning. The network news tends to skew left, as do newspapers in major cities.

  • by SuperKendall (25149) on Wednesday August 26, 2009 @09:54PM (#29211363)

    Yes, I'm sure Flickr has a full-time staff of people whose job it is to sift through random photos all day long, looking for ones that fall under several categories of things to get politically upset about

    Of course your statement is absurd. Plenty such images are on Flickr.

    But the image taken down was very well known at the time, having got a ton of press and being bandied as proof of some kind of racism.

    It doesn't take a "staff of people" in that case, it takes one vigilante at Flickr deciding to take matters into his (or her) own hands and hide behind the shield of the near-unversally reviled DMCA, figuring the real rights holders would want it that way... only they didn't. Oops.

  • by Attila Dimedici (1036002) on Wednesday August 26, 2009 @10:26PM (#29211527)
    You are correct it is not left leaning, it leans in favor of Democrat politicians, in particular those that favor greater government control over the economy. Polls have repeatedly shown that those who work in the news media overwhelming self-identify as Democrats and as liberals.
  • by Anonymous Coward on Thursday August 27, 2009 @01:03AM (#29212521)

    Actually, Flickr is a government contractor

    So what? FOIA only applies to public agencies, not contractors.

    You & everyone who modded you up really are some dumbasses.

  • by commodore64_love (1445365) on Thursday August 27, 2009 @11:40AM (#29217709) Journal

    P.S.

    >>>Surely, defence should be left to corporations, right?

    It is. Virtually everything the military buys originated in a competitive bidding process amongst many corporations. The equipment comes from several thousand companies.

    The only reason why the Army fights wars, rather than corporations, is the same reason why we have monopolies in electrical service or phone service - it's a natural monopoly where having multiple providers is not practical.

  • by blackraven14250 (902843) * on Thursday August 27, 2009 @12:47PM (#29218741)
    Put it in perspective: in the other half of the world (the middle east+some of southeast asia+africa+oceania-australia) we would be considered the most extreme leftists. That would put us right in the middle of all of you.

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