Category Archives: copyright

Articles related to copyright enforcement

Sky’s Takedown Notices – Justice or Intimidation?

It’s a pretty scary thing to receive a legal letter from the law firm of a large corporate, especially when they claim that you’re in breach of their rights and then make a series of demands. Going to court is very expensive and even if you’re in the right, do you have enough money to be a test case? If you lose you might end up not only having to pay your own costs but those of the company who sued you. The threat of legal action is pretty intimidating for most people.

Sky TV is currently sending such letters to a number of people (see an example here). These are their own paying customers, who just want to watch Sky TV on their home-made entertainment systems. So why is Sky doing it? Before we can answer that question we’ll have to explain a little bit about electronic program guides.
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Trans-Pacific Partnership: An FTA with fangs

In the last few years, New Zealand law governing intellectual property has been in a state of flux driven by the content industry demanding changes to protect their business. No sooner has one set of law changes been debated then another set of the same laws and demands pops up into view. From S92 of the Copyright Act to the ACTA treaty and now to the Trans Pacific Partnership.

The TPP is an existing free trade agreement (FTA) between NZ, Singapore, Brunei and Chile signed in 2005. The TPP allows for more countries to join and the USA, Australia, Vietnam and Peru have all indicated that they are interested. Substantive negotiations began in March.

Of course, the USA has proceeded to reframe the agreement around its usual default template for any FTA – draconian IP protection on behalf of its content industries and limited concessions in all other areas, creating a one-sided arrangement. As Australia experienced in its FTA negotiations with the US, it’s not about a meeting of mutual interests but a game of how much wiggle room can be found on the edge of the US demands.

New Zealand has long sought a free trade deal with the US (our second largest export market). In theory it means that our agricultural exports will have an easier time in a large market, but the powerful US agricultural lobby will limit this while changes to IP law will mean an increase in transfers from NZ users to US owners. However, even if the result is actually a net loss to New Zealanders, an FTA with the US is a “win”┬ápolitically.

S92. ACTA. TPP. Once again the battle is on to defend our rights as both consumers and producers of IP before our laws are rewritten to suit the US.

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Media Release: Tech Liberty supports new copyright bill

New copyright infringement act fair and practical

23 Feb 2009
Wellington, New Zealand

With the release of the text of the new copyright bill proposed at the end of 2009 we finally see the end of guilt on accusation, and see in place a sensible and well reasoned process around protecting copyrighted material. The new text deals with the majority of the issues that Tech Liberty has been concerned about, restores due process and privacy for those accused, and spells out a fair set of obligations and responsibilities for ISPs in handling users who infringe on copyright via their services.

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Media Release: Tech Liberty welcomes planned Section 92A revision

New section 92A of Copyright Act does a far better job of balancing civil liberties and copyright enforcement.

Commerce Minister Simon Power released a statement revealing an intended framework and policy to replace Section 92A of the Copyright Act. This section, meant to come into force this year, was suspended after a broad coalition of rights holders, ISPs, and stakeholders opposed the original vague and ill-defined wording.
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Media Release: New Zealand has no place in anti-democratic ACTA negotiations

The Ministry of Economic Development refuses to reveal draft text of the Anti-Counterfeiting Trade Agreement at a briefing in Wellington today.

Ministry of Economic Development (MED) spokesperson George Wardle, at a briefing in Wellington today, said that they could not release the draft text of the treaty as all parties to the negotiation had agreed to keep it confidential. He also refused to say who in New Zealand they had consulted with and refused to reveal what New Zealand was arguing for. The Ministry of Economic Development is working with the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and Trade representing New Zealand’s interests in the negotiations.
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