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Submission + - CRIA Faces $60 Billion Law Suite

jvillain writes: The Canadian Recording Industry Association faces a law suite for 60 Billion dollars for wilful infringement.

These numbers may sound outrageous, yet they are based on the same rules that led the recording industry to claim a single file sharer is liable for millions in damages.

Since these exact same companies are currently in the middle of trying to force the Canadian Government to bring in a DMCA for Canada it will be interesting to see how they try to spin this. I guess they were right after all about flagrant copy right issues happening in Canada.

Submission + - Canadian record labels face copyright charges. (thestar.com) 1

codesmith.ca writes: From Michael Geist's Blog. It seems the estate of Chet Baker filed a lawsuit back in October '08 against several major record labels in Canada for copyright infringement. To whit: using his work on compilation CD's and not getting permission beforehand, and not paying royalties for the use. It seems the companies can put the use of the recording on a 'we'll get around to it' list and (maybe) settle up later.

It's reported that there's better than $50 million (CDN) already owning to all artists on the list, but with the law involved, that value could be as high as $60 billion. (emphasis mine) due to the $20000 per song infringement charges.

To quote one commentor: That is some seriously delicious irony on this dreary Monday morning


Submission + - What do you do when Google screws you? 8

NEOGEOman writes: I work for a small company in Australia that sells a business product developed in Canada. We've come to rely on Google's AdWords system to bring us business — the vast majority of our new customers contact us because we came up near the top of their search for inventory control software. Google just cut us off, with an automated form letter that describes all kinds of offenses that don't apply to us (except perhaps our fairly unattractive landing page) and their stern wording and lack of response seems to indicate that there's no way to appeal or even find out what we did wrong. We've been AdWords users for years, and give Google a comparatively modest $1,000+ every month. Without this source of customers, we're kind of panicking. Our Canadian head office is panicking more, since their account is still active but their business is obviously the same. They have more staff than we do, and a lot more riding on continued AdWords success. We might fail without AdWords, but we WILL fail without our parent company.

My question for Slashdot is: If you're a legitimate small business selling legitimate software and Google cuts you off with the same letter they use to kill malware purveyors (Our software's might not be world-class but malware is a bit of a stretch!) what do you do?

Comment Analogy fail (Score 1) 227

This would be akin to Gucci telling eBay it needs to police all of its auctions, rather than Gucci itself being required to police eBay's auctions.

It's a bullshit attempt to shift the cost of policing users to an inappropriate entity IMHO.

This is an anlogy fail, because this is exactly what happened in France: An upper court decided that it is eBay's responsibility to either ensure that they do no longer act as a platform to sell couterfeited materials, or to stop selling certain fashion labels (in this case: Louis Vitton, Dior, etc.)

Submission + - WIPO advisory comitee has nuanced views on piracy

AtomicJake writes: As the World Intellectual Property Organization (WIPO) in known for a very rigid course combating counterfeiting and piracy in general, it comes as a surprise that during a meeting of the WIPO Advisory Committee on Enforcement, several presenters have shown nuanced views on the economics of enforcing the intellectual property rights. Combating clothing piracy might not be beneficial for the welfare of a developing country. Most surprising is the presentation (PDF) of WIPO Chief Economist Carsten Fink, which says that illegal copies of software may actually be beneficial even for consumers of the original goods. Also the piracy of audio-visual goods creates not only losses but also benefits for e.g. hardware manufacturers. Maybe this is because Mr. Fink wrote the presentation before joining WIPO?

Comment Re:All patents are math (Score 1) 219

A very good question. Or to turn the argument around, if any nonobvious process can be patented, could I patent all new mathematic discoveries?

Nope. Two ways to attack it:

First, 35 USC 101 requires that the process be "useful". Courts have construed this to mean that the process must have a non-abstract output that changes the physical world in some way.

OK - but this means that (pure) software patents do not match this test. Software does not change the physical world is some way (except if part of an specific apparatus, which - I agree - is patentable).

Second, 35 USC 101 also requires that you invent it. It could be argued that the discovery already existed, you just didn't know about it. E equaled M*C^2 long before Einstein came along, just no one knew.

This is physics, not math. I could point you to many software patents that try to patent math - especially in the categories cryptography, code redundancy, and signal processing. All those algorithms are pure math. Obviously, the math was already there before somebody discovered it.

Comment Re:All patents are math (Score 1) 219

Any argument loose enough to classify algorithms as mathematics is necessarily loose enough to classify *all* patentable subject matter as "mathematics".

What about all physical devices? Tell me your isomorphism to bring them to math. Note: it's not the description which is patented, but the described object.

35 USC 101 expressly authorizes granting of patents on a new and useful process.

OP stated explicitly *all* patentable subject matter. I gave a counterexample; QED.

What process cannot be expressed as math? Accordingly, what is the meaning of the term "process", if math can't be patented, but processes can?

A very good question. Or to turn the argument around, if any nonobvious process can be patented, could I patent all new mathematic discoveries?

Comment Re:Full source code (Score 1) 219

I would not object to software patents if they actually provided the complete functional source code in the patent. You want a patent, you provide full disclosure.

Only if I could implement the same mechanism using a different source code without infringing your patent. Otherwise a source code listing does no add any value to the society.

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