News You Could Do Without

by Mike Masnick

Filed Under:
copyright, eff, fair use


EFF Wants To Tack 'Fair Use Principles' Onto Studios' Content Guidelines

from the things-that-will-go-over-like-a-lead-balloon dept

Last week, we wrote about how the big studios, along with some smaller user-generated content sites had put together a bunch of meaningless guidelines for how "user generated content" sites should deal with content that might be unauthorized. The backers of the guidelines insisted that any site that followed the guidelines wouldn't then get sued over copyright issues. Of course, it seemed a little silly because agreeing to the principles meant giving up the right to do things that were perfectly legal and that a company might find reasonable to grow their business. It also wasn't a particular balanced document, since it only gave lip service to "fair use." Apparently to compensate for that, the EFF has come out with its own Fair Use Principles for user-generated content sites that will surely be almost entirely ignored by the studios. While it does help the EFF make the point that fair use is important, but neglected, in the original, it's unlikely that too many people will notice or care. The studios aren't interested in anything fair here. Note how ironic it is that a set of principles for a user-generated content site wasn't developed in the open at all, but passed down as if on stone tablets. This isn't about a balanced document, it's about tilting the table in the studios' favor.

Reader Comments

Subscribe: RSS

View by: Time | Thread

  • Humans should rule

    The EFF made one statement that I fully agree with. I real breathing human should make decisions instead of a filtering program.

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  • identicon
    Anon coward, 1 Nov 2007 @ 4:29pm

    There is one thing to remember when dealing with the studios, bring lots of lube.

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  • identicon
    zcat, 1 Nov 2007 @ 5:41pm

    The original bargain of copyright was to encourage the creation of content which was then available for other people to use. "Fair use" meant reusing that content in was way that wasn't just wholesale copying for commercial gain. Add anything of reasonable value, and you could claim you were making "fair use" of the material. Or you could just wait 14 years and it would be completely free to everyone.

    "Digital Rights Management" attempts to take away the public's right of fair use and eventual public domain, so I see no reason for the government to uphold their part of the agreement. Give publishers a choice; they can make the content available unrestricted, and have the legal protection of 'copyright', or they can attempt to apply their own digital means of protection and forgo the 'copyright' agreement altogether. But I don't think they should get both.

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

Add Your Comment

Have a Techdirt Account? Sign in now. Want one? Register here
Get Techdirt’s Daily Email
Use markdown for basic formatting. HTML is no longer supported.
  Save me a cookie
Follow Techdirt
Techdirt Gear
Show Now: Takedown
Report this ad  |  Hide Techdirt ads
Essential Reading
Techdirt Deals
Report this ad  |  Hide Techdirt ads
Techdirt Insider Chat
Report this ad  |  Hide Techdirt ads
Recent Stories
Report this ad  |  Hide Techdirt ads


Email This

This feature is only available to registered users. Register or sign in to use it.