from the old-stories dept
Five Years Ago
This week in 2017, the SESTA fight continued, and we took a look at how Google would survive the law, but startups might not, and how much of the supposed sex trafficking epidemic driving the bill simply didn’t exist. Ajit Pai’s FCC amusingly declared victory over wireless competition issues, the streaming exclusivity wars were heating up and driving people back to piracy, and we looked at how the Supreme Court’s misunderstanding of copyright law was impacting halloween costumes. The Trump administration was continuing to panic about leaks, the global security community lost its trust in NSA-developed crypto technology, and a man in the UK got a 12-month sentence for refusing to turn passwords over to police.
Ten Years Ago
This week in 2012, the USTR was pretending that it was an exercise in transparency to make people testify about the TPP text that they weren’t allowed to see, while Rep. Lofgren put forth a simple three-point plan for actual TPP transparency (the same week she introduced the Global Internet Freedom Act). Kickstarter was being overaggressive in dealing with DMCA notices, Google’s copyright crackdown punished an author for torrenting his own book, and there was a parade of horror stories from copyright collection organizations. While the US copyright office was seeking comments on the worrying idea of resale royalties for visual artists, Portugal made the great move of declaring file sharing for personal use to be legal.
Fifteen Years Ago
This week in 2007, we got a look at how political astroturf “coalitions” are formed, while the NLPC was continuing a bogus campaign against Google Video. We also saw a very early appearance of the term “fake news” on Techdirt after Comcast was fined for airing some undisclosed nonsense. The RIAA got another judicial smackdown in one of its file sharing lawsuits, which according to a new report were not working out very well at all. But this was also the week that we noted the first of such lawsuits to head to a jury, and our post didn’t mention the name that would soon be extremely prominent in the annals of file sharing history: Jammie Thomas.
In The Beginning…