by Mike Masnick
Fri, Aug 10th 2007 3:01am
In my collection of CDs (and, yes, I still buy CDs), there's a relatively large number of "promotional" CDs -- many of which were purchased at independent record shops or online. It's not uncommon at all to find such CDs for sale, despite warning labels that say that cannot be sold. I've often wondered how enforceable that claim is, and we may soon find out. Universal Music claimed copyright infringement against a guy who was selling promotional CDs on eBay and eBay took down the auctions. The EFF is now suing Universal Music, claiming that it's a misuse of copyright law under the first sale doctrine (which says, like with any traditional good, you have the right to resell a digital good). Universal Music's response is that the CDs are actually still the property of the record label, and merely licensed to whoever received it. Of course, that could open up a ton of legal questions about ownership of certain goods -- especially if the receiving party never agreed to the deal. In the meantime, though, it's yet another case that highlights the blurring lines of ownership over tangible goods as makers of such goods try to make them more like digital goods.
If you liked this post, you may also be interested in...
- EFF Heads To Court To Fight Off Smart Grid Company That Can't Wrap Its Mind Around Section 230 Protections
- EFF, ACLU Asks Ninth Circuit Court To Rehear Two Recent CFAA Cases
- Court Rules That It's Legal To Sell Promotional CDs
- EFF Explains Why You Should Be Allowed To Sell Promo CDs
- DJ Arrested For Selling Pre-Release Promo CDs On eBay