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Government

Submission + - Hardware vendors sue Dutch government over copyright levies (itworld.com)

concealment writes: "Hewlett-Packard, Acer, Dell and Imation are suing the Dutch government over new levies on hard disks, smartphones, tablets and MP3 players that are meant to compensate the music and movie industries for losses caused by home copying.

"The companies now hold the State liable for all damages caused by the levies," the hardware vendors said in a joint news release on Wednesday. Trade association FIAR Consumer Electronics, which has as members companies such as Samsung, Sharp, Sony and LG, is also a party to the litigation. The lawsuit was filed Wednesday in the District Court of The Hague."

Your Rights Online

Submission + - RIAA Failed To Disclose Expert's Lobbying History to "Six-Strikes" Partners (torrentfreak.com)

concealment writes: "A month before the controversial “six strikes” anti-piracy plan goes live in the U.S., the responsible Center of Copyright Information (CCI) is dealing with a small crisis. As it turns out the RIAA failed to mention to its partners that the “impartial and independent” technology expert they retained previously lobbied for the music industry group. In a response to the controversy, CCI is now considering whether it should hire another expert to evaluate the anti-piracy monitoring technology."
Piracy

Submission + - MPAA chief admits: SOPA and PIPA "are dead, they're not coming back." (arstechnica.com)

concealment writes: "Dodd sounded chastened, with a tone that was a far cry from the rhetoric the MPAA was putting out in January. "When SOPA-PIPA blew up, it was a transformative event," said Dodd. "There were eight million e-mails [to elected representatives] in two days." That caused senators to run away from the legislation. "People were dropping their names as co-sponsors within minutes, not hours," he said.

"These bills are dead, they're not coming back," said Dodd. "And they shouldn't." He said the MPAA isn't focused on getting similar legislation passed in the future, at the moment. "I think we're better served by sitting down [with the tech sector and SOPA opponents] and seeing what we agree on."

Still, Dodd did say that some of the reaction to SOPA and PIPA was "over the top"—specifically, the allegations of censorship, implied by the black bar over Google search logo or the complete shutdown of Wikipedia. "DNS filtering goes on every day on the Internet," said Dodd. "Obviously it needs to be done very carefully. But five million pages were taken off Google last year [for IP violations]. To Google's great credit, it recently changed its algorithm to a point where, when there are enough complaints about a site, it moves that site down on their page—which I applaud.""

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