This Week In Techdirt History: January 14th - 20th

from the a-sad-week dept

Five Years Ago

This week in 2013, we were shook by the sad news of Aaron Swartz's death. Through the week, we looked at the actions of prosecutors and investigators and the fact that in the US "anyone interesting is a felon", and at all the other crimes that would have resulted in less jail time than Swartz was facing. But we also looked at what we should learn from him moving forward, about how to build up instead of tearing down, and how "content" can't be the end-game of knowledge, and we watched as researchers posted their work online for free in tribute.

Ten Years Ago

This week in 2008, while NBC Universal was arguing in favor of ISP filtering and copy protection tech, the recording industry was kinda-sorta getting over its obsession with DRM — and moving to other stupid ideas like digital watermarks and annoying anti-piracy voiceovers on review copies instead. The DMCA was being abused to go after bad reviews, the EFF was making the argument that "making available" is not infringement, and J.K. Rowling was trying to block a third-party Harry Potter guidebook — and amidst this we noted that it seems like most people don't actually know what copyright is for.

Fifteen Years Ago

This week in 2003, some people thought it looked like Hollywood's copyright control was loosening a little, but we weren't so optimistic. Indeed, that very week the Supreme Court upheld retroactive copyright extension in the Eldred ruling despite Lawrence Lessig's best efforts (though there was potentially some silver lining). The music and tech industries announced a rather worrying policy agreement that would see the latter stop fighting for user rights in exchange for the former dropping its calls for mandatory hardware-level DRM, though the agreement ended up being largely meaningless and, of course, was completely spurned by the MPAA. Meanwhile those movie studios were being strangled by their own IP obsession while trying to navigate the licensing thicket to get older movies online.

Hide this

Thank you for reading this Techdirt post. With so many things competing for everyone’s attention these days, we really appreciate you giving us your time. We work hard every day to put quality content out there for our community.

Techdirt is one of the few remaining truly independent media outlets. We do not have a giant corporation behind us, and we rely heavily on our community to support us, in an age when advertisers are increasingly uninterested in sponsoring small, independent sites — especially a site like ours that is unwilling to pull punches in its reporting and analysis.

While other websites have resorted to paywalls, registration requirements, and increasingly annoying/intrusive advertising, we have always kept Techdirt open and available to anyone. But in order to continue doing so, we need your support. We offer a variety of ways for our readers to support us, from direct donations to special subscriptions and cool merchandise — and every little bit helps. Thank you.

–The Techdirt Team

Filed Under: history


Reader Comments

Subscribe: RSS

View by: Time | Thread



Add Your Comment

Have a Techdirt Account? Sign in now. Want one? Register here



Subscribe to the Techdirt Daily newsletter




Comment Options:

  • Use markdown. Use plain text.
  • Make this the First Word or Last Word. No thanks. (get credits or sign in to see balance)    
  • Remember name/email/url (set a cookie)

Close

Add A Reply

Have a Techdirt Account? Sign in now. Want one? Register here



Subscribe to the Techdirt Daily newsletter




Comment Options:

  • Use markdown. Use plain text.
  • Make this the First Word or Last Word. No thanks. (get credits or sign in to see balance)    
  • Remember name/email/url (set a cookie)

Follow Techdirt
Advertisment

Report this ad  |  Hide Techdirt ads
Essential Reading
Techdirt Deals
Report this ad  |  Hide Techdirt ads
Techdirt Insider Discord

The latest chatter on the Techdirt Insider Discord channel...

Loading...
Recent Stories

This site, like most other sites on the web, uses cookies. For more information, see our privacy policy. Got it
Close

Email This

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