from the uh-oh dept
Photo by Adam Hart-Davis/DHD Multimedia Gallery
Of course, in a country where copyright laws trump all, perhaps Damon could sue for infringement and seek discovery to find out all the documentation on PRISM.
by Mike Masnick
Thu, Jun 13th 2013 8:12am
by Tim Cushing
Mon, Dec 17th 2012 5:25am
Remember how Waterstones was going to sell the Kindle and take a sales commission on the hardware and any ebooks bought from that device? Apparently they decided that the subtle but positive relationship of simply making money off the Kindle wasn't good enough; now they've turned the Kindles they sell into billboards.Advertising on the Kindle is nothing new. The ad-supported version is available at a discount if the buyer's willing to put up with being advertised at in exchange for a price break. But, as The Digital Reader points out, Waterstones-branded Kindles aren't discounted.
The Kindles sold by Waterstones got a firmware update in early November. This update wasn't rolled out to all the Kindles, and for good reason. According to a couple different users (this story has also been confirmed by Waterstones) the only change in the update was a new screensaver.
I have not yet seen it myself, but the Kindle owners are reporting that all the screensavers have been replaced by a Waterstones logo. Furthermore, there's no way to disable or replace that screensaver, so every time these Kindle owners pick up their device they will be reminded where they purchased it.
Thank you for your email regarding your Kindle Paperwhite from Waterstones.This should do some serious damage to what was already a rather sketchy hookup. Back in September, Waterstones' CEO James Daunt made the following ostensibly cheerful statement announcing its partnership with Amazon.
I am sorry you are disappointed by the addition of a Waterstones screensaver after the recent software update to Kindle. It is our view that this screensaver does not constitute advertising and differs substantially to the advertising-supported Kindles available to the US market. The Waterstones screensaver is a non-dynamic, static image that will change infrequently and not advertise any specific product, offer or website.
It is not possible to remove the Waterstones screensaver to replace it with the former Amazon screensaver. We apologise that this change was made without consultation, and hope it does not detract from or alter your reading experience. However, if you feel it does, please let us know and we will arrange for the return of the device and a full refund.
I am sorry for any inconvenience this has caused.
Customer Service Team
"There are substantial difficulties for us around working with our major competitor," Daunt said at the Independent Publishers Guild Digital Quarterly Meeting on Tuesday, according to The Bookseller. "But we think we have an agreement which protects some of the most significant bear traps that sit there, and there are some major upsides for us."Notably, Daunt didn't say that the agreement protects Waterstones from "significant bear traps." Instead, his Freudian slippage states that the traps themselves will be unharmed, even if, as it appears, Waterstones has to trigger the traps on its own.
At yesterday's IPG event, Daunt revealed a few more details about Waterstones' Amazon partnership. "Waterstones-specific Kindle screensavers, bestseller lists and a Read For Free offer are among the plans," The Bookseller reports.That's a pretty frickin' specific screensaver, Daunt. Shame it changes so "infrequently" as to be completely undetectable.
by Mike Masnick
Mon, Jul 30th 2012 12:07pm
by Michael Ho
Wed, May 9th 2012 5:00pm
by Mike Masnick
Tue, Sep 13th 2011 10:11pm
This sweeping prohibition encompasses a substantial number of uses of the seal that would not suggest government endorsement, such as the display on a website of an exact copy of an official County news release that contains the image of the seal next to the text, or the publication in a newspaper of a photograph of a County official delivering a speech from a podium upon which the County seal is attached and visible.The court does compare it to the similar federal law, but notes that at least the federal law makes it clear that it's only intended for use where there may be confusion over a potential endorsement. And, with that, here's the damn logo that the county can't sue us over.
by Michael Ho
Tue, Aug 23rd 2011 5:00pm
by Mike Masnick
Wed, Apr 27th 2011 12:23pm
Cowing's use isn't deceptive either. The seal is plainly used in conjunction with the news article and the advertisement is no closer on this blog than ads are on news websites and in most newspapers and magazines for that matter. In fact, the seal of the Executive Office of the President of the United States is used extensively all over the internet, sometimes even in promixity to advertising. Threatening phone calls from the White House only serve to chill free speech. Indeed, Cowing has replaced the image of the seal with a pixelated version and the words “OSTP Logo Pixelated Due to a Phone Call Complaint from the White House.”Finally, we agree with the EFF in noting: "surely the White House has better things to do than to threaten bloggers engaged in legitimate free speech."
by Mike Masnick
Fri, Apr 22nd 2011 8:13am
by Mike Masnick
Thu, Apr 14th 2011 7:08pm
The court recognizes that it could, if it were so inclined, choose to exercise jurisdiction over this matter and permit this case to proceed here in Delaware, given that a settlement agreement between the parties contains a clause that names Delaware as the forum for litigating disputes arising from the agreement. That settlement does not bind this court, however, and given the facts and circumstances surrounding this case, the court has decided in its discretion to decline to exercise jurisdiction. First, all relevant conduct and activities appear to have taken place in California, where the defendants reside and operate. Similarly, it appears that the Central District of California would be a far more convenient forum for trial, since the court's reading of the complaint and other documents in the record is that the vast majority of documents and witnesses pertaining to this case are in California. Furthermore, the consent judgment that underlies the plaintiffs' complaint was entered by the United States District Court for the Central District of California, and states that that court retains jurisdiction for the purposes of enforcing the consent judgment and related permanent injunction. It would be far better for that court to determine whether the conduct in question falls within the scope of the consent judgment and permanent injunction. Finally, given the defendants' apparently limited financial resources and the significant costs associated with litigating in Delaware, the court finds that the defendants would be unfairly prejudiced if they were forced to litigate in this district.In response to this ruling the band has been mocking Variety and its lawyers relentlessly. The link above goes to a pretty incendiary blog post which, frankly, might also open the band up to defamation charges, but that would really only be digging Reed Elsevier deeper into a truly pointless legal battle. Separately, the band has used our favorite movie creation tool, Xtranormal to create this rather hilarious (and probably NSFW) video of a "fictitious meeting" between Variety's outside lawyer on this case and Variety's editor. It made me laugh:
Entertainingly, in support for your argument, you included a version of 701 in which you removed the very phrases that subject the statute to ejusdem generis analysis. While we appreciate your desire to revise the statute to reflect your expansive vision of it, the fact is that we must work with the actual language of the statute, not the aspirational version of Section 701 that you forwarded to us.Godwin also points out that the Encyclopaedia Britannica appears to have an image of the logo as well. As for our own usage here, I'll first note that the NY Times is also displaying the logo with its story, and it would seem that all three of us are similarly not running afoul of this law, in that none of us are using the logo with any attempt to deceive at all, but to display factual information for the sake of informing.
In your letter, you assert that an image of an FBI seal included in a Wikipedia article is "problematic" because "it facilitates both deliberate and unwitting violations" of 18 U.S.C. 701. I hope you will agree that the adjective "problematic," even if it were truly applicable here, is not semantically identical to "unlawful." Even if it could be proved that someone, somewhere, found a way to use a Wikipedia article illustration to facilitate a fraudulent representation, that would not render the illustration itself unlawful under the statute. As the leading case interpreting Section 701 points out, "The enactment of § 701 was intended to protect the public against the use of a recognizable assertion of authority with intent to deceive." ... Our inclusion of an image of the FBI Seal is in no way evidence of any "intent to deceive," nor is it an "assertion of authority," recognizable or otherwise.
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