Is A Captcha DRM? Craigslist Wins Default Judgment Claiming Yes
from the uh-oh... dept
Last year, we wrote about a troubling set of lawsuits filed by Craigslist that seemed very dangerous, as it was pushing the boundaries on a series of legal concepts, all of which could come back to haunt Craigslist (and others) at a later date. For example, we noted that there was a "weak" DMCA claim that said that the captchas used by Craigslist to get people to prove they were human were actually "technological protection measures," and circumventing them violated the anti-circumvention provisions of the DMCA. While it's not the same lawsuit (apparently Craigslist had filed even more such lawsuits), Ray Dowd has the details of Craigslist winning a default judgment in a similar lawsuit after the company sued didn't bother to defend itself. This is why the concept of default judgments always concerns me. Now we have a ruling on the books that finds captchas are like DRM, and getting around them even if for perfectly legal purposes (can't read 'em?) may count as violating the DMCA.