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Submission + - Google Books case dismissed on Fair Use Grounds

NewYorkCountryLawyer writes: In a case of major importance, the long simmering battle between the Authors Guild and Google has reached its climax, with the court granting Google's motion for summary judgment, dismissing the case, on fair use grounds. In his 30-page decision (PDF), Judge Denny Chin — who has been a District Court Judge throughout most of the life of the case but is now a Circuit Court Judge — reasoned that, although Google's own motive for its "Library Project" (which scans books from libraries without the copyright owners' permission and makes the material publicly available for search), is commercial profit, the project itself serves significant educational purposes, and actually enhances, rather than detracts from, the value of the works, since it helps promote sales of the works. Judge Chin also felt that it was impossible to use Google's scanned material, either for making full copies, or for reading the books, so that it did not compete with the books themselves.

Comment Re:NSA denies everything (Score 4, Insightful) 394

Here are my questions: why do they always talk about "authorization" when making denials? And why don't reporters call them out on it? This story is a classic example:

“NSA does collect information on terrorists and our national intelligence priorities but we are not authorized to go into a U.S. company’s servers and take data,” Alexander said.

That's great and all. But it's like a shoplifter saying, "sure I went into the store and looked around, but I wasn't authorized to take anything."

Submission + - Aereo required to testify about non-public patent info

NewYorkCountryLawyer writes: In ABC v Aereo, a copyright infringement action against Aereo, the Magistrate Judge has overruled Aereo's attorney/client privilege objection to being forced to divulge non-public details about its patented technology. In his 15 page decision (PDF) he ordered the continued deposition of the company's CTO and CEO about their patent applications. My gut reaction is that this sets a very dangerous precedent, giving the big copyright plaintiffs yet another 'in terrorem' device to use against technology startups — the power to use the lawsuit as a chance to delve into a defendant's non-public tech secrets.

Comment Re:Woohoo! (Score 4, Insightful) 130

Why the fuck would you use a mobile app to control an IV pump?

The point is really two-fold. First, we already regulate medical devices like infusion pumps and radiology information systems. Under the proposed regime, one does not simply avoid regulatory scrutiny and obligations by offloading them to an app.

Second, if a app makes claims to do things things that would ordinarily be regulated, you don't escape the regulatory regime simply by saying, I'm just an iPhone app.

Both prongs make some sense if you accept the basic assumption that FDA regulation of devices makes sense at all.

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