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Comment: Re:Key Point Missing (Score 2) 34

by NewYorkCountryLawyer (#47234405) Attached to: Appeals Court Finds Scanning To Be Fair Use

The summary misses a key point. Yes they scan and store the entire book, but they are _NOT_ making the entire book available to everyone. For the most part they are just making it searchable.

Agreed that it's not in the summary, but as you correctly note, it's just a "summary". Anyone who reads the underlying blog post will read this among the facts on which the court based its opinion: "The public was allowed to search by keyword. The search results showed only the page numbers for the search term and the number of times it appeared; none of the text was visible."

So those readers who RTFA will be in the know.

+ - Appeals Court finds scanning to be fair use in Authors Guild v Hathitrust

Submitted by NewYorkCountryLawyer
NewYorkCountryLawyer (912032) writes "In Authors Guild v Hathitrust, the US Court of Appeals for the Second Circuit has found that scanning whole books and making them searchable for research use is a fair use. In reaching its conclusion, the 3-judge panel reasoned, in its 34-page opinion (PDF), that the creation of a searchable, full text database is a "quintessentially transformative use", that it was "reasonably necessary" to make use of the entire works, that maintaining maintain 4 copies of the database was reasonably necessary as well, and that the research library did not impair the market for the originals. Needless to say, this ruling augurs well for Google in Authors Guild v. Google, which likewise involves full text scanning of whole books for research."

Comment: Re:Legal question (Score 1) 173

Well unlawful searches would be a violation to due process, the question then becomes what's the remedy for that? I think we're so used to the evidence exclusion rule that we tend not to realize that's just one way to "fix" the problem. You can do criminal charges against the police, or you can do civil damages.

The counterargument against excluding evidence is: you committed a crime; this evidence shows it. Why should you get off just because the police did something wrong? That didn't magically make it so you didn't commit the crime, it just turns the whole process into a game with arbitrary rules.

Comment: Re:Legal question (Score 1) 173

by nomadic (#47227153) Attached to: The Government Can No Longer Track Your Cell Phone Without a Warrant
Uh....Fernandez v. California says the opposite of what you're saying. In it the Supreme Court held that even though one occupant had denied police entry, that after he had been arrested and moved away from the premises the other occupant could consent to a search. Only where one occupant is physically present and denying access are the police prevented from searching.

In any event, my hypothetical was more akin to Illinois v. Rodriguez, where the Court held that as long as the police had a reasonable belief that the person giving consent to search was in fact authorized to do so, evidence won't be excluded, even if that person did not have actual authority.

That being said, I will qualify that I believe in some states actual authority is required, but at the Supreme Court/Federal level only apparent authority is needed.

Comment: Re:Legal question (Score 1) 173

by nomadic (#47227077) Attached to: The Government Can No Longer Track Your Cell Phone Without a Warrant
I don't think there's much that can be done as a preventive measure, though I guess since a lot of these cases hinge on really close questions about whether a search was reasonable it's possible. You'd have to make it super specific I'd think, maybe something like: "No trespassing. This specifically includes law enforcement; the owner does not and never will give consent for law enforcement to search or enter these premises for any reason whatsoever. Anyone giving such consent is not the owner and is not authorized to grant any such permission. The owner reserves all rights under the law and will pursue a civil action and/or file criminal charges against anyone, including law enforcement, who unlawfully enters these premises."

Kind of over the top but in a close case it might convince a judge that whatever pretext the police came up with to enter was unreasonable. Also might be a good idea to have a motion-activated camera with sound to capture anyone who would be in a position to read it so you could capture whoever enters, if you really want to be careful.

Comment: Re:Legal question (Score 1) 173

by nomadic (#47226729) Attached to: The Government Can No Longer Track Your Cell Phone Without a Warrant
Well the exclusionary principle isn't enshrined in law, or even considered a Constitutional requirement, it's just a policy decision the Courts have made to keep the police in line. Theoretically they could get rid of it tomorrow and offer a different remedy for an unlawful search (like lawsuits for damages). Once there's no deterrent effect (like where the cops don't know it's illegal, or at least can show that) the Court discards it as essentially useless.

Comment: Re:Jurisdiction (Score 4, Informative) 173

by nomadic (#47221193) Attached to: The Government Can No Longer Track Your Cell Phone Without a Warrant
Well IAAL (in the 11th circuit even) so I tend to get a little OCD about legal terms. You're right it has precedential value in other circuits and any court addressing the issue will take this case seriously, though circuits frequently do just explicitly disagree with other circuits so I'd be more comfortable once this gets to the Supreme Court.

Comment: Re:Legal question (Score 4, Informative) 173

by nomadic (#47221055) Attached to: The Government Can No Longer Track Your Cell Phone Without a Warrant
Not really; the exclusionary principle is based on the premise that the courts will punish law enforcement for knowingly evading their constitutional responsiblities by not letting them use whatever evidence they wrongfully obtained. Until binding precedential caselaw is established, law enforcement can be considered to not have known they were required to get a warrant before, so any evidence before that point would not be excluded.

For example, the cops generally need a warrant to enter your house to search for drugs unless an owner grants permission to the search. If you're staying over at my house while I'm away, the cops ask you for permission to search the place thinking it is your house, and you say yes, anything they find is admissible because they had a good faith belief they were conducting a legal search.

+ - Councilman/Open Source Developer submits Open Source bill->

Submitted by NewYorkCountryLawyer
NewYorkCountryLawyer (912032) writes "New York City Council Member Ben Kallos (KallosEsq), who also happens to be a Free and Open Source Software (FOSS) developer, just introduced legislation to mandate a government preference for FOSS and creating a Civic Commons website to facilitate collaborative purchasing of software. He argues that NYC could save millions of dollars with the Free and Open Source Software Preferences Act 2014, pointing out that the city currently has a $67 million Microsoft ELA. Kallos said: "It is time for government to modernize and start appreciating the same cost savings as everyone else.""
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