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The Courts Your Rights Online

EFF To Ask Judge To Rule That Universal Abused the DMCA 139

xSander writes "The Electronic Frontier Foundation (EFF) will urge a federal judge in San Jose, CA to rule that Universal abused the DMCA to take down a video of a toddler dancing to a Prince song. The case in question, whose oral argument will be Tuesday, October 16, is Stephanie Lenz vs. Universal, a case that began back in 2007. Lenz shared a video on YouTube of her son dancing to 'Let's Go Crazy' on a stereo in the background. After Universal took the video down, Lenz filed a suit with help of the EFF to hold Universal accountable for taking down her fair use. The court had already decided that content owners must consider fair use before sending copyright takedown notices."
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EFF To Ask Judge To Rule That Universal Abused the DMCA

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  • Meh (Score:4, Interesting)

    by Anonymous Coward on Friday October 12, 2012 @10:58AM (#41631415)

    Where is the line between this "fair use" and using the song to promote your personal brand? I think this particular case is better dealt with socially by embarassing the shit out of universal for being such tools.

    I'd rather see them go after the automated systems that are sending DMCA notices for things that are clearly NOT their IP in any way shape or form.

  • Abuse of power (Score:0, Interesting)

    by Anonymous Coward on Friday October 12, 2012 @10:59AM (#41631429)

    Yet another example of why a private company should not have the power of a government and force people to take down material or sue them without the agreement of a court.

  • Must (Score:0, Interesting)

    by Anonymous Coward on Friday October 12, 2012 @11:00AM (#41631439)

    The must consider fair use or... what? What are the consequences of misusing the DMCA?

  • EFF is stretching it (Score:1, Interesting)

    by Dishwasha ( 125561 ) on Friday October 12, 2012 @11:13AM (#41631605)

    The toddler/family was conducting neither criticism, comment, news reporting, teaching, scholarship, or research with the Prince music. In addition, the woman published to a public forum where others besides her family could view the video. People really need to start taking responsibility for their own actions and stop using children and the "awww, cmon...." mentality as defense for their lack of judgement.

  • by MickyTheIdiot ( 1032226 ) on Friday October 12, 2012 @11:26AM (#41631773) Homepage Journal

    As it is often pointed out here, by clear case law corporations are supposed to get the most for their stockholders. They're basically mandated by caselaw to push the envelope. Therefore you can't trust corporations to do the right thing... ever. Any law that expects a corporation to work in good faith is flawed. The only way you can call them on it is to take them to court, then it turns out to be the usual "my lawyer is bigger than your lawyer" crap.

    They shouldn't have the power to take something down on their own say so. It's a violation of both due process and free speech. But, heh, they can afford a better lawyer than I can. That's america.

  • Re:Meh (Score:3, Interesting)

    by Atzanteol ( 99067 ) on Friday October 12, 2012 @12:12PM (#41632433) Homepage

    I think most reasonable people would see that using a product to get people in the door to make money from something else is "commercial use."

  • by war4peace ( 1628283 ) on Friday October 12, 2012 @01:37PM (#41633417)

    Here's an interesting counterexample very fresh in my memory.
    Two days ago I watched the "Cat watches Slayer" video posted on wimp.com (http://www.wimp.com/watchingslayer/). I remembered how much I loved Slayer when I was 16-18 and all I could find was a couple of cassette tapes which I couldn't play anymore (yeah, I got rid of my cassette player) so I immediately went and bought their albums online. Yes, all of them, because I could afford this one purchase.
    So, paradoxically, a video of a cat watching Slayer boosted some Slayer sales. Go figure.

  • Re:Meh (Score:4, Interesting)

    by Technician ( 215283 ) on Friday October 12, 2012 @01:55PM (#41633631)

    Would playing a stereo too loud in a public place be a copyright violation for making available? Maybe they can use this to outlaw loud car stereos and mandate the use of headphones in cars.

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