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  • Sep 6th, 2011 @ 7:45pm


    I'm sorry, but this post isn't warranted.

    I honestly LOVE techdirt for all the dedication they put in reporting on these really important topics (and the no-fluff, no-nonsense, just-the-right amount of sarcasm language), which is why it deeply saddens me to see you become biased on some of the issues. Continuing along this path will turn you into what torrentfreak.com is now - while still a good resource, one needs to fact-check their stories vigorously to be able to rely on them.

    As you identified in the posting, the issue here isn't the name, but the look of the app. CBS has a trekkie information app for the iPad, and the look and feel of it is very LCARS like. But so does the tricorder android app, as seen here:

    (CBS app on the left, moonblink's android app to the right)

    The left side menu, along with the top-left curve and top band, is pretty much a copy (or derivative) of the LCARS design, to which CBS (most probably) owns licensing rights, while the developer doesn't. So while he is free do use the name (as you correctly point out), he may not use the visual interface without licensing it. Imho it's shouldn't even matter, as the tricorder did not feature a LCARS interface (afaik, I'm not a trekkie).

    CBS's takedown notice looks completely ok to me.

  • Sep 1st, 2011 @ 4:23pm

    old news i'm afraid

    My country (slovenia) has had this for a couple of years now and afaik some other eu member have it too. I'd check germany first cause that's where we get most of our legal 'inspiration' from.

    It's called the 'fee for private use' and is in essence meant to compensate rights holders for the extra copies of cds we the people make so we could for instance play them in our car or mp3 player as well. That's kind of absurd becase private reproduction is a fair use right here (keyword 'right'), but it doesn't bother anyone since the real gist of it is 'infringment tax', as it was unwisely admitted in press releases following the passage of said provision into law. The main sponsor wasn't the copyright lobby (we're a small, 2 mill market that can't even buy stuffz on iTunes) but the collective societies that skim 25 percent or more off the top.

    And it's not just on cds or dvds, but flash cards, printers, fotocopiers and some other gear as well. Think not all of it is being collected yet cause of tariff disputes but you get the picture.

    This there was a court ruling in Spain (?) Abt this that excluded corporate buyers, but not individuals from having to pay the said fee.

    But one can see why rights holders would want to establish this as a precedent and then move on to ISPs. It's free money.