No, The Supreme Court Did Not Legalize Downloading
from the wtf? dept
First things first: I’ve appeared on The Alyona Show on RTTV a few times in the past, and have always enjoyed it. I don’t know much about Russia Today, the operation behind RTTV, though some have argued that it’s a propaganda arm for the Russian government. My general position on these things is that if people want to interview me about the subjects that I’m interested in, I’m happy to talk to anyone. I’ve done interviews for NPR and the CBC as well, and I’ve given a talk for execs at the BBC, all of which are also government supported media.
However, to be a credible news source… you have to at least be able to get the basics right. On Monday of this week, we wrote about the Supreme Court’s decision to let stand a Second Circuit appeals court ruling, saying that a download did not require extra royalties for also being a public performance. It’s basically a licensing dispute over what licenses need to be paid if you’re offering downloadable music. Interesting, but not a huge deal.
So I was a bit shocked to see a headline declare that the Supreme Court legalizes downloading music, because that’s simply not true. I clicked through… and it’s from RTTV, who apparently understood this story so little that almost nothing in the headline or opening sentence is accurate. On the assumption that perhaps they’ll change or pull this down, here’s a screenshot:
No matter what your position is on copyright law, or this particular case, making totally ridiculous claims, like the Supreme Court legalized downloads, is flat out ridiculous, and suggests not only did someone not understand the case at hand, but didn’t even bother to read the most basic information about the case.