euphemistic writes: Reportedly the information Wikileaks was set to disclose about a particular bank back from December, "a massive batch of internal Bank of America emails" has been leaked. While the site hosting it seems to currently be down due to the obviously gigantic amount of traffic interested in this leak, the leak is said to pertain to the Bank of America's improper foreclosure on homes. "The report came from a former employee with Balboa Insurance — a risk management and insurance firm. The employee reportedly corresponded with Bank of America employees and was told to falsify loan numbers on documents to force Bank of America to foreclose on homeowners."
euphemistic writes: The Belgian music royalty society SABAM (Société d’Auteurs Belge – Belgische Auteurs Maatschappij) which represents authors, composers and publishers has been targeted by an investigative and satirical show called Basta after receiving complaints about their business practices; such practices include suing a business owner because the TV in his private room could be overheard by public in his shop. Basta decided to test the boundaries of how far SABAM would go to squeeze a buck from those "publically performing" copyrighted works with tragically ludicrous results. English description of the piece can be found here, and the video except from the show (in Belgian) here. Well worth a read for all those who have suspected some music royalty societies have no shame.
euphemistic writes: There is finally some actual damage caused (indirectly) by Wikileaks, although not what you might think. After PayPal froze Wikileaks' account for "violation of the PayPal Acceptable Use Policy, which states that our payment service cannot be used for any activities that encourage, promote, facilitate or instruct others to engage in illegal activity"; there were some who were not so pleased by this decision and responded by launching a DDoS attack squarely at the paypalblog announcing the decision. So far the finger has been pointed at Anonymous by researchers from Panda Labs. Given there have been separate calls for Operation Avenge Assange, it's probably not beyond the realms of plausibility.
euphemistic writes: 'An Austrian man who became the first person outside the US to wear thought-powered "bionic" arms has died from injuries sustained in a car crash... Kandlbauer, who would have turned 23 next month, sustained severe head injuries when the specially modified car he was driving swerved off the road in the south east of Austria and crashed into a tree on October 19. The cause of the accident is not yet known, particularly whether the neurally-controlled arm-prostheses he had been fitted with might have played a role.'
euphemistic writes: The Pirate Bay is back in court for the appeal against last year's rulling. On April 17th in 2009, Pirate Bay operators Fredrik Neij, Gottfrid Svartholm, Peter Sunde and Carl Lundstrom were sentenced to 1 year in prison and ordered to pay over US$900,000 in damages each. Only 3 of the "Pirate Bay Four" are present this time, with Svartholm remaining in his Cambodian home due to health problems. The trial last year was plagued by problems including a leaked verdict and accusations of biased judges; so it's possible the appeal will have a few intriguing twists in store for us. Completion of the trial is expected by the 15th of October, so stay tuned for more news.
euphemistic writes: The Ninth Circuit has ruled that reselling goods made overseas with a brand name/logo on them might NOT be covered by Section 109 of the Copyright Act. This section states that people who purchase goods from the initial copyright owner are allowed "to sell or otherwise dispose of the possession of that copy" as they see fit, and this right extends to subsequent buyers of those items. However Costco, who bought Omega brand watches from an overseas licensed distributor of Omega goods (but not Omega themselves) were infringing copyright because the items were made outside the US.
This decision has further implications, especially for sites such as Amazon and eBay.
The EFF have called this decision "bogus copyright theory"