3 Count: Flicked Away

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1: Flickr treads more lightly in copyright matter

First off today, after the uproar following its takedown of the Obama/Joker image, which was the result of a controversial DMCA notice, Flickr has changed their DMCA policy to replace the allegedly infringing image rather than removing the entire page. This keeps the conversation and the other elements of the page intact, but completes the requirement of the DMCA to remove the content.

Images that are the subject of DMCA takedown notices will now present a simple graphic that says, “This image has been removed due to a claim of copyright infringement”.

This is viewed by many as an improvement over the old system, however, there is still no word on whether Flickr has the ability to restore images that are taken down or if users will still be required to reupload images following a counter-notice.

2: Copyright owners sue XM Radio Canada

XM Radio Canada (Note: XM and Sirius are separate companies in Canada) is being sued by the Canadian licensing agencies for unpaid royalties. Earlier this year, the Copyright Royalty Board of Canada ruled that both XM and Sirius had to pay millions in back royalties dating to 2005. The deadline for payment was July 31, a day that came and went without payment from XM Radio Canada.

Now the CMRRA is suing XM Radio Canada to bar the company from using their work, which would likely be a death blow to the company. XM Radio Canada and its parent company, Canadian Satellite Radio Inc., have indicated that they plan to pay the royalties in 2010, though that clear was not adequate for rightsholders.

3: Roxanne’s Nonexistent Revenge

Finally today, though it’s not a copyright story per se, with the record labels playing the villains in many people’s mind when it comes to copyright, a feel-good story about former rapper Roxanne Shanté, who in 1984, when she was just 15, had a hit single with “Roxanne’s Revenge”. According to the story, which started in The Daily News, Shanté took advantage of a clause in her record contract to force her record label to pay hundreds of thousands dollars to pay for her education, which included a Ph.D from Cornell.

The problem is that it appears none if it is true. There is no evidence of any such contract, Warner Music was not even her label, she does not have a Ph.D from Cornell (or anywhere else that has been able to be located) and is not licensed to practice psychology or any related field (her supposed new profession).

It appears that the story is pretty much false and Shanté has not denied any of the allegations, just saying that “What he’s trying to do is trying to get himself known, to get the popular sites to read after him. This is not a $5 billion Ponzi scheme. What would make someone go so hard and heavy at that?”


That’s it for the three count today. We will be back tomorrow with three more copyright links. If you have a link that you want to suggest a link for the column or have any proposals to make it better. Feel free to leave a comment or send me an email. I hope to hear from you.

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