I have looked at all these pages and they seem to be primarily fan pages discussing, advertising for or just enthusiastic about the band. I see several embedded Youtube videos, plenty of photos and a few lyrics. I could not find any way to play or download any music directly from the blogspot domain.
There were a couple of links to third party file sharing sites like sharebee from which I presume one could download a track (quite possibly infringing I guess)
Now this is where I see a problem.
Blogspot/Google is not hosting any infringing music it seems. Some fans may talk about the band and they may even include a link to a file sharing site. So what do you want Google to do? Do you want to make it illegal even to link to a filesharing site, even to talk about where someone can download music. This is where it comes closer to a free speech issue.
Perhaps a parallel for the drug world: right now it is illegal to sell pot. But it is not illegal to say, "you can get some from Harry" or "You can get pot down on East 14th Street" (whether that is even true or not). There's a parallel here to forbidding links to "possibly" infringing sites. Do you want to make it illegal to say (point to a site) where perhaps some unlicensed content might be downloadable?
So how exactly is Google to know, let alone be responsible for, links to third party sites?
OK, well what about the images and videos they actually do host on blogspot. As you already acknowledged, DMCA takedowns can remove any copyrighted material on request from the owner. Is this not good enough?
You ask "Have you ever tried to file a DMCA notice? " The answer is yes, and it was not difficult, nor have my requests ever been ignored. Now I suppose if you have 100,000 them you might think it difficult if you though it worth your while to issue that many.
So what could be the alternative? There are thousands of U2 photos and videos and lyrics just in the Google search you suggested.
What would you have Google/blogspot do?? How on earth could they possibly know whether an uploader has a license to use a given photo or video. Perhaps some are free publicity shots, Perhaps some are licensed from Getty Images. Google cannot possibly know.
I license stock photography as a business and believe me it is not possible for a third party to identify infringements; it is not publicly available information. Aside from the fact that there is an existing §512 DMCA safe harbor, and aside from the complexities of fair use, the service provider, in this case Google/blogspot, simply is not in a position to know if a usage is infringing or not.
The suggestion that they monitor their user's pages for infringing material thus is completely unfeasible.
Now Youtube is an interesting example because they do allow content providers the option to fingerprint their videos and have Youtube automatically monitor uploads and even block some uploads. Even so many providers actually opt to allow their content on Youtube and get the exposure and ad revenue.
So getting back to blogspot, Youtube videos are not a problem and the copyright owner can choose to deal with other content if they want through DMCA
You ask "is that acceptable as the status quo".
Actually I think, yes.
Do I think it could be improved? yes, but not in the way you might expect.
In line with my comments above I do not believe it will ever be technologically feasible ro prevent all unauthorized use on the internet. What is the alternative? To take advantage of it. Here we have thousands of U2 fans eager to talk about the band and share their enthusiasm
Jeremy Williams, Senior Vice President and Deputy General Counsel of Warner Bros. Entertainment. addressed this phenomenon in a panel presentation at Berkeley
He suggests that companies like his should tolerate and support noncommercial uses — even tolerate some commercial uses. This is the approach he has taken, giving the okay to fan sites even when they use incidental advertising to support the site but drawing the line at fan merchandising.
So how to improve on the status quo?
Seek ways to take advantage of all this free publicity and enthusiasm. See it as an opportunity, rather than a curse.
All of a sudden the world will look quite different, and quite a bit more promising.
(sorry for the long response, but there was a lot to cover)
Perhaps you can help me out here. Bob Pisano has said "They're called rogue sites, and they exist for one purpose only: to make a profit using the Internet to distribute the stolen and counterfeited goods and ideas of others."
Actually Lyle, I see it the opposite way to some extent. I can lose my physical book, but with Amazon I can always redownload a copy (as long as they stay in business.)
Also I can go on a trip and take 10 or 100 books with me, or 500 pdfs, which I can't do with paper.
Agreed though that paper is nice for reading at home and marking up. It is frustrating not to be able to easily note, cut and paste, share and lend with ebooks. The functionality is tightly constrained.
Such anecdotal comments are interesting but it would be more compelling to gather and graph statistics by location, author, publisher and format, and to have such a significant volume of complaints that they could be presented to the publishers to make the case for more flexible publishing practices.
Everyone is frustrated when a book is not available in the desired format, but a more organized advocacy campaign by readers would be more effective.
Also to consider is that there may be economies of scale and a public benefit in the comprehensive coverage that Google, for example, provides in search.
In this manner, we might, when appropriate, consider Google as somewhat of a public utility, at least insofar as it has some responsibility for the public good.
For example, were Google unilaterally to shut down its mail, search and map servers tomorrow across the world, this would certainly disrupt the economy and threaten the public good (even national security perhaps) and most likely invite a rapid government response.
With Google's size comes responsibility for fairness, transparency and reliability.
I think this is a great idea. I am a professional stock photographer and make my living from licensing images, plus some writing.
This means that the British ISPs will scan every photograph uploaded to their servers, plus all illustrations, designs and text quotations and snippets, compare the usage with the terms and conditions of any outstanding licenses or authorized uses, evaluate for fair use and derivative usages, determine what content is in the public domain, resolve jurisdictional issues, and then if necessary either bill the user and send me the money, or insist that the content be removed.
Wait. You mean this only applies to Hollywood films and recordings from the major music labels?
Oh darn, looks like it is not such a good idea after all