This Week In Techdirt History: September 1st – 7th
from the back-then dept
Five Years Ago
This week in 2014, police in the UK were threatening domain registrars and abusing anti-terror laws to snoop on journalists (while keeping mum about just how often they do so), while the Culture Secretary was demanding that search engines magically stop piracy. Artist deadmau5 was embroiled in two crazy IP battles — one in which Ferarri was trying to block the sale of his decorated car, and another in which Disney was trying to block his attempt to trademark his logo (even as he discovered the company had been pirating his music). In Australia, a movie studio was comparing piracy to pedophilia and terrorism while ISPs were getting sued for wanting court orders before blocking websites. And the IFPI issued an especially bogus takedown notice demanding Kim Dotcom take his own album down from his own website.
Ten Years Ago
This week in 2009, the Canadian recording industry was mobilizing in Toronto to push bad copyright ideas, the especially bad idea of a music tax was rearing its head yet again, Hollywood was making another attempt to start using selectable output control to block DVRs, and the UK IP Minister was defending kicking people off the internet. Both the new USPTO head and the Commerce Secretary were calling for more patents, approved faster — I guess like the insane one they granted saying that you can patent the idea of using precisely three knowledge bases to diagnose medical diagnostic decisions — while we got another example of the US’s pressure on China to adopt a patent system turning around and biting it. But one of the worst ideas came from Microsoft’s patent boss, who was calling for globalization of the patent system.
Fifteen Years Ago
This week in 2004, outgoing MPAA boss Jack Valenti was continuing to misunderstand and misrepresent the digital word right up to the wire of retirement, while his incoming replacement Dan Glickman got off to a worrying start with a speech praising and defending Valenti’s words and the export of the DMCA to Australia. Over at the RIAA, Mitch Glazier was still pushing the “sue everyone” angle, the INDUCE Act got a mostly-cosmetic update, and the downloadable music store market was still a mess. We did get one very important ruling though, with the Court of Appeals upholding the decision that it’s not a DMCA violation to create third-party garage door openers, though the precedent it set was murky and not as clear-cut as one might have hoped.