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News Scribd sued for copyright infringement

Discussion in 'Article Discussion' started by CardJoe, 21 Sep 2009.

  1. CardJoe

    CardJoe Freelance Journalist

    3 Apr 2007
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  2. 1ad7

    1ad7 What's a Dremel?

    13 Feb 2008
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    I think this is a BAD idea. This could set a precedent for websites being completely legaly responsible for their users actions on the site. Not only for copyright infringement but maybe there words or planning illegal activities via PM on a forum etc...
  3. quack

    quack Minimodder

    6 Mar 2002
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    Scribd is protected by the safe harbor provisions in the DMCA. The people uploading copyrighted documents are the ones who are liable not the site itself.

  4. Flibblebot

    Flibblebot Smile with me

    19 Apr 2005
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    True. Surely any lawsuit against them would have to show that they developed the site with the express purpose of sharing copyrighted materials? Rather than, as is more likely the case, developing the site to allow users to share non-copyrighted materials and the website being subverted.

    Frivolous lawsuit, IMHO.
  5. mclean007

    mclean007 Officious Bystander

    22 May 2003
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    That's a fairly sweeping statement. It is true that s512(c) DCMA protects service providers against liability for damages for copyright infringement arising "by reason of the storage at the direction of a user of material that resides on a system or network controlled or operated by or for the service provider", but this safe harbour is conditional. First, the service provider must not have actual knowledge that the material or an activity using the material on the system or network is infringing; second, in the absence of such actual knowledge, the service provider must not be aware of facts or circumstances from which infringing activity is apparent; thirdly, upon obtaining such knowledge or awareness or notification of infringement, the service provider has to act expeditiously to remove, or disable access to, the material, in order to avoid liability.

    Even then, if the service provider receives "a financial benefit directly attributable to the infringing activity, in a case in which the service provider has the right and ability to control such activity", he's liable.

    I don't use Scribd, so am not sure exactly how it works, but presumably it takes a cut from paid works, and uses ad revenue elsewhere? I'm confident there is at least a reasonable case against them.
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