This Week In Techdirt History: June 6th – 12th

from the and-then-and-then-and-then dept

Five Years Ago

This week in 2016, there were lots of stories about questionable actions by the FBI, and amidst all that, the agency turned down our FOIA request to find out how much money they spent getting into Syed Farook’s iPhone. A worrying appeals court ruling chipped away at privacy while Senator Jeff Sessions was seeking to blast a giant hole in the Fourth Amendment. We learned more about the NSA’s handling of Ed Snowden’s concerns prior to his leak, and took a look at how despite all the supposed damage, the agency was doing great. This was also the week that Gawker filed for bankruptcy.

Ten Years Ago

This week in 2011, the RIAA was arguing that changing copyright terms is unconstitutional, though only if they get shorter, while the Supreme Court agreed to hear the Golan case examining the opposite. YouTube added Creative Commons licensing options for videos while Russia’s president proposed baking similar options right into copyright law. ICE declared victory in its domain seizure campaign while Homeland Security appeared to be stalling on related FOIA requests. Meanwhile, the ridiculous prosecution of whistleblower Thomas Drake was falling apart and by the end of the week, Drake took a plea bargain deal.

Fifteen Years Ago

This week in 2006, long before ICE’s domain seizures, we wondered why the US government was getting involved in takedowns of foreign music sites. We also took a look at the negative impact of the DMCA on innovation, and the way that the music industry’s efforts to shut down sites often served as free advertising via the Streisand Effect — and the same was true with the movie industry, as was soon demonstrated by the MPAA going after Isohunt. Meanwhile, the copyright industries were trying to sneak through a huge and insane change to the law around “incidental copies”. Blizzard relented on its attempts to block third-party World Of Warcraft game guides, the story of how Canada’s “Captain Copyright” propaganda mascot might himself be a copy continued to develop, and we were surprised when some British politicians appeared to have reasonable views on copyright.

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