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Businesses

Submission + - Has AT&T Lost its Corporate Mind?

Ponca City, We Love You writes: "Tim Wu has an interesting (and funny) article on Slate that says that AT&T's recent proposal to examine all the traffic it carries for potential violations of US intellectual property laws is not just bad but corporate seppuku bad. At present AT&T is shielded by a federal law they wrote themselves that provides they have no liability for "Transitory Digital Network Communications" — content AT&T carries over the Internet. To maintain that immunity, AT&T must transmit data "without selection of the material by the service provider" and "without modification of its content" but if AT&T gets into the business of choosing what content travels over its network, it runs the serious risk of losing its all-important immunity. "As the world's largest gatekeeper," Wu writes, "AT&T would immediately become the world's largest target for copyright infringement lawsuits." ATT's new strategy "exposes it to so much potential liability that adopting it would arguably violate AT&T's fiduciary duty to its shareholders," concludes Wu."

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