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Government

Report Suggests That Nanny State Might Actually Not Be For the Best 430

tonyreadsnews writes "Usually, 'thinking of the children' is a starting point to impose limitations on video games and internet in general. For once, a study requested by UK's Prime Minister seems to be a bit more objective than most. In the Executive Summary (PDF) 'Children and young people need to be empowered to keep themselves safe — this isn't just about a top-down approach. Children will be children — pushing boundaries and taking risks. At a public swimming pool we have gates, put up signs, have lifeguards and shallow ends, but we also teach children how to swim.' I think that is an important point that most studies miss, that just 'thinking of the children' and locking the bad stuff away is actually setting them up for failure later in life. A direct link to the full PDF is also available."
The Courts

Judge Rejects RIAA 'Making Available' Theory 353

NewYorkCountryLawyer writes "A federal judge in Connecticut has rejected the RIAA's 'making available' theory, which is the basis of all of the RIAA's peer to peer file sharing cases. In Atlantic v. Brennan, in a 9-page opinion [PDF], Judge Janet Bond Arterton held that the RIAA needs to prove 'actual distribution of copies', and cannot rely — as it was permitted to do in Capitol v. Thomas — upon the mere fact that there are song files on the defendant's computer and that they were 'available'. This is the same issue that has been the subject of extensive briefing in two contested cases in New York, Elektra v. Barker and Warner v. Cassin. Judge Arterton also held that the defendant had other possible defenses, such as the unconstitutionality of the RIAA's damages theory and possible copyright misuse flowing from the record companies' anticompetitive behavior."
Patents

Judge Makes Lawyers Pay For Frivolous Patent Suit 263

Gallenod writes "The Denver Post is reporting that the U.S. 10th Circuit Court of Appeals has upheld the decision of a Federal judge who threw out and reversed a jury decision in favor of a patent infringement claim and ordered the plaintiff's lawyers to pay the defendants' court costs. U.S. District Senior Judge Richard P. Matsch sanctioned the plaintiff's attorneys for 'cavalier and abusive' misconduct and for having a 'what can I get away with?' attitude during a 13-day patent infringement trial in Denver. With the Appeals Court in agreement, could this case be the 'shot heard round the world' in the revolution against patent trolls?"
Privacy

Do Not Call Registry Set to Become Permanent 183

coondoggie passed us a NetworkWorld article about an initiative by the Senate to transform the Do Not Call list into a permanent institution. Originally individuals on the list were to have their place on the list revoked; up to a third of the people who signed up might have fallen off the list by the Autumn without renewing legislation. A move by the Senate this past Wednesday will permanently prevent salesmen from calling those who have registered for the list. "Aside from what telemarketing junk the bill does prevent, experts note what may also be a big deal is a provision that is NOT in this bill and that is protection for those other annoying time wasters: political robo calls."

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