This Week In Techdirt History: January 28th – February 3rd

from the old-and-new dept

Five Years Ago

This week in 2013, something that’s now the norm was fresh and surprising: Netflix released the entire season of its new show House of Cards at once. Something less pleasant was born the same week, with the W3C’s first official mention of adding DRM to HTML5. We also saw Alan Cooper sue John Steele and Prenda Law, leading to a bit of a scramble by everyone’s favorite law firm. Meanwhile, this was the week that the DMCA exemption for phone unlocking was eliminated, and the legal battle over Barbie and Bratz (the subject of a recent episode of our podcast) finally came to an end.

Ten Years Ago

There was lots of copyright back-and-forth this week in 2008, with U2’s manager jumping on the “make the internet pay us!” bandwagon, a fresh flare-up over the copyright status of jokes, an EU court telling ISPs they don’t have to hand over downloader names, Swiss officials pushing back against the aggressive tactics of anti-piracy groups, and a judge telling the RIAA (which had recently struggled to explain exactly why copyright damages need to be higher) that it should be fined for bundling downloading lawsuits. Meanwhile, as had been expected, Swedish prosecutors caved to US pressure and took action against The Pirate Bay.

Fifteen Years Ago

This week in 2003, Kazaa pre-empted the heated race to kill it in the music industry by filing a lawsuit against record labels for misusing their copyrights. Declan McCullough was musing about the scary possibility of the DOJ going after file sharers as felons, Business Week was pushing the ol’ “don’t litigate, educate” line on piracy (which is half right), and record stores were trying to save their future by teaming up with digital distributors. Telemarketers were suing the FTC in an attempt to block its proposed do-not-call list, an internet cafe in the UK was found guilty of piracy, and the format war for the future of disc-bound music was raging despite nobody caring.

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Comments on “This Week In Techdirt History: January 28th – February 3rd”

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1 Comment
Anonymous Coward says:

It’s a shame the judge ten years ago didn’t actually follow through on his threat, considering the decade of copycat boilerplates that followed, even after the RIAA pinky-swore not to go after children and senior citizens.

Granted, it’s great that Otis Wright and Australian judges finally caught on in the Prenda, Malibu Media and DBC cases, but it’s only after years of damage and illegitimate settlements have been inflicted.

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