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Media The Courts The Internet Your Rights Online Usenet Indexing Trial Set To Begin Next Week 76

An anonymous reader writes "Only a few weeks after a jury acquitted Alan Ellis, the owner of the BitTorrent site 'OinK's Pink Palace,' of copyright infringement, another high profile case is about to start next week, this time for the newsgroup side of things. The MPA (Motion Picture Association) trial against, a website that indexes NZB files and content on the newsgroups, will begin in London on Monday. Will lightning strike twice in favor of website indexing?" Torrentfreak points out one major difference between the cases: "Ellis’s charge was one of fraud, allegedly conducted by an individual and dealt with under criminal law, while that leveled against Newzbin is one of allowing and inducing illegal copying, i.e copyright infringement, but carried out by a bona fide company under civil law."
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  • by BadAnalogyGuy (945258) <> on Sunday January 31, 2010 @12:14PM (#30971340)

    When I was a kid I used to ride a Frankie Hill board to school everyday. We were big into the whole anti-establishment thing in those days, smoking dope after school and drinking until blitzed on the roof of my friend's house. And we always saw the harassment we got from cops for tearing up private property as something that ought to be changed. Skateboarding, as we used to say, is not a crime.

    Nowadays, I'm a little wiser and a little more flush with cash. I can see now how the truck grinds and rail slides were tearing up the things we were essentially vandalizing. It's not something that I'm especially proud of, but I can't say I have any regrets. It's just something that we kids had to do to escape the overbearing oppression our middle class parents were putting on us.

    Likewise, indexing newsgroups (and websites) is something that just happens. It's almost impossible to effectively know what is going through the pipes without going in and performing filtering explicitly. Newzbin should be found guilty of indexing, but we should all be defiantly flicking off the MPA and declaring that indexing is not a crime.

  • by binarylarry (1338699) on Sunday January 31, 2010 @12:42PM (#30971562)

    Google also has billions and billions of dollars and can exert pressure on information distributors.

    Google Exec: "Oops, sorry MPA, apparently you and all of your associated studios just fall off the google. Oh noes!"

  • by TimHunter (174406) on Sunday January 31, 2010 @01:01PM (#30971718)

    use up the free time our middle class parents were giving us.


  • by tangent3 (449222) on Sunday January 31, 2010 @01:10PM (#30971772)

    Now I have. Thanks MPAA.

  • by SkyLeach (188871) on Sunday January 31, 2010 @01:58PM (#30972326) Homepage

    wait... wat?

    "found guilty of indexing"!?!?

    wtf does that mean exactly? Guilty of writing a program to search data? Guilty of writing a program to search data and then letting others view the results?

    The only way that the MPAA/RIAA even know what is out there is by doing the same thing, the only difference being they aren't providing a service, they are angry about what they found.

    What we find ourselves faced with is the guilt or innocence of someone writing software and then *giving away the software and/or the results of the software*. If indexing is a crime, then it is only a very very small step to say that writing software that gives others access to "features" of their hardware that the manufacturer doesn't want to give access to is illegal. After all, without VLC and mplayer it would be pretty easy for Quicktime/iTunes and Microsoft Media player to lock down the watching of illegal movies and listening of illegal music.

    Keep walking down that path, and soon we loose all our digital freedoms...

  • Re:What (Score:3, Insightful)

    by zonky (1153039) on Sunday January 31, 2010 @02:23PM (#30972568)
    So it's more like dmoz? They link to copyright material as well- it's up to the user to judge if they have a valid license to view the work. Newzbin is a service that can aid copyright holders, nad allow them to get usenet posts cancelled with the newsgroup providers.
  • by iamhassi (659463) on Sunday January 31, 2010 @02:56PM (#30972946) Journal
    "Newzbin should be found guilty of indexing"

    Then I think Google should be found guilty of indexing []. After all that link provided me with thousands of valid Windows XP CD keys, and Google indexed those sites and provided me with the information, that's illegal, right? Oops, google just gave me valid credit card numbers! []

    When will Google and all the search engines of the world be brought up on charges and this madness end!?
  • Re:Sigh (Score:3, Insightful)

    by Spad (470073) <slashdot@s p a d .> on Sunday January 31, 2010 @03:09PM (#30973068) Homepage

    The rights-holders obviously didn't file enough takedown requests to satisfy themselves...or something.

  • by Ihmhi (1206036) <> on Monday February 01, 2010 @04:06AM (#30978650)

    Never, because Google can fight back and win - thereby establishing a precedent unfavorable to the **AAs.

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