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Posts tagged legal

Weekend Links: Lawsuit against Harlequin confirmed as class action. Amazon stock plunges
October 26, 2014 | 10:23 am

harlequinWhich Authors Have Quit Writing Who You Wish Would Return? (Book Riot) As a reader I often view authors as writing until they die, their fingers curled over their keyboard or the pen still clutched in the hand. But even if they don’t formally announce their retirement as Spencer did, many authors do stop writing. ** Author Lawsuit Against Harlequin Certified as Class Action (The Digital Reader) Originally filed in July 2012, Keiler et al v. Harlequin Enterprises Limited et al was brought by a group of authors who allege that Harlequin had cheated them out of their royalties. *** Amazon Stock Plunges as Record Loss...

Morning Links: Ellora’s Cave vs Dear Author removed to Federal Court. Kindle vs. Kindle
October 23, 2014 | 9:00 am

kindleEllora's Cave vs Dear Author Suit Removed to Federal Court (The Passive Voice) Dear Author has just removed the case from the Ohio state court where it was originally filed to the relevant U.S. District Court in Ohio claiming diversity jurisdiction is present in the case. *** How Piracy Benefits Companies, Even if They Don't Admit it (Lifehacker) We've talked a lot about the legality of piracy a lot here at Lifehacker, but really, you're probably breaking the law everyday anyway. However, piracy can sometimes have its benefits. Even to the companies who own the copyrights. *** Ten Things I've Learned About Life from Blogging (Design...

John Grisham speaks out – for pedophiles?
October 16, 2014 | 12:25 pm

johngrisham.jpgJohn Grisham, hawklike legal eagle, millionaire bestselling author, spokesperson for middle-aged white pedophiles ... oops. How did that one slip through the publicist's net? Through Grisham's own mouth, it seems, relayed via the UK's Daily Telegraph in an interview taped for your enjoyment and judicial edification. And the legal opinions vouchsafed therein are interesting to say the least... Grisham complains about the harsh sentences meted out to consumers of pornography, even child pornography, and bemoans the fact that: "we have prisons now filled with guys my age, 60-year-old white men in prison who've never harmed anybody, would never touch a child, but...

Morning Roundup: eBay and PayPal to part ways. Update on Ellora’s Cave vs. Dear Author
September 30, 2014 | 9:00 am

dear author logoeBay and PayPal to Part Ways in 2015 (GigaOM) Thanks to pressure from activist investors, eBay and PayPal will be separate entities next year, ending 12 years of togetherness. *** Stephen King Predicts That Physical Books Are Here to Stay (GalleyCat) Author Stephen King predicts that the physical book will “be here for a long, long time.” *** Update on the Ellora's Cave vs. Dear Author Defamation Suit (The Digital Reader) Much has changed in the three days since I brought you news that Ellora’s Cave was suing well-known romance book blog Dear Author for defamation, and few of the changes favor Ellora’s Cave. *** Four Methods for Choosing...

Aereo loses, cell phone privacy wins at Supreme Court today
June 25, 2014 | 11:22 am

A pair of important Supreme Court decisions came down today—one disappointing and one critically important to anyone who uses mobile devices. The disappointing one is a 6-3 decision killing Aereo. The service that used dedicated individual miniature antennas to stream broadcast TV service to people’s computers over the Internet has been ruled to appear too much like a cable company, even as it scrupulously followed the letter of existing case law (while nonetheless skirting its spirit). Aereo could try to license content from the networks going forward, but would have to pass the costs on to consumers—and as Gizmodo...

Another bad idea: Charging news aggregators for snippets
May 13, 2014 | 4:25 pm

news aggregatorsGoogle is the bad guy yet again. Well, not just Google but other news aggregators. Spain is attempting to pass a law to force aggregators to pay for the content they collect. The argument for the law is that most people don't click through headlines and snippets to get to the "real" site. So since the news site isn't getting their page views from the aggregators, they want to charge for the links. From the article: Under the new law, the original publisher will be compensated even for the reproduction of headlines and snippets of text. Written permission and a greater fee...

UK Inspector of Prisons condemns political interference in book ban policy
March 28, 2014 | 12:25 pm

inspector of prisonsThe storm of criticism that greeted the UK Government's new policy of stopping anyone sending books to prisoners has gone beyond writers and left-wing politicians to professionals in the prisons system. Now, in an interview with The Independent, the UK Chief Inspector of Prisons, Nick Hardwick, has condemned the ban as "not sensible,” with individual prison governors best placed to decide what prisoners should and shouldn't receive. "The problem in this case… is trying to micro-manage this from the centre, with the centre describing very detailed lists of what prisoners can and can't have,” he said in The Independent. “I think...

Commercial drone use apparently legal in US after all…for now
March 7, 2014 | 6:09 am

Amazon Delivery Drones Remember that story I wrote the other day about the FAA’s restrictions against commercial use of drones? Motherboard reports that a federal judge has dismissed the FAA’s first (and only) case against someone making commercial use of a drone. 29-year-old Raphael Pirker, fined for filming a commercial at the University of Virginia, contended that the FAA has never actually issued any binding regulations restricting commercial use of drones, and the judge agreed. Though the FAA issued a policy notice in 2007 ostensibly making them illegal, the notice was only advisory and not actually legally...

Morning Roundup: Getting the Most Out Of New eReaders, Google Books Appeal Filed
December 30, 2013 | 9:00 am

Google Books appealHow to Get the Most Out of Your New eReader (GoodeReader) Today, we look at some of the great websites out there to aid you in your literary endeavors and look at some cool services that will get you the most out of your e-reader. *** Author's Guild Files Appeal in Google Books Lawsuit (The Digital Reader) Never one to give up on a fight, the Authors Guild filed a new appeal last week in the Google Books lawsuit. *** Konrath's Publishing Predictions 2014 (Joe Konrath) I've been looking to the future, wondering what is going to happen next, and I've got a few equally wild ideas. *** Facebook...

Bob Kohn files appeal of publisher anti-trust settlements
December 23, 2013 | 6:10 pm

Ah, the schadenfreude continues. Andrew Albanese at Publishers Weekly reports that Bob Kohn has filed his appeal of the approval of the Macmillan and Penguin e-book settlements. In the hearing a couple of weeks ago, Judge Cote suggested it was unlikely he would be found to have standing to appeal the case, since he’s not a direct party to the case. However, Kohn is clearly going to keep filing appeals until the appeals courts turn him down. Kohn’s stance is that the price-fixing conspiracy entered into by the publishers and Apple was not actually illegal, since it served to...

Supreme Court rejects Amazon appeal; New York affiliate program sales tax law stands
December 2, 2013 | 4:14 pm

A few years ago, states started passing laws requiring Amazon to pay sales tax if it offered affiliate marketing programs in their state, rather than only being required to pay them if it had physical facilities there. This resulted in Amazon cutting off its affiliate programs in any state that passed such a law (such as my former home, Missouri). Amazon finally fought New York’s law to the Supreme Court—and the Supreme Court declined to hear the appeal, meaning that the appeals court decision affirming the law will stand. Amazon has been pushing for the “Marketplace Fairness Act,” which...

Judge Dismisses Authors’ Case Against Google Books
November 14, 2013 | 4:09 pm

google booksWell, the lengthy legal battle over Google Books may be coming to a close. According to cNet, U.S. Circuit Judge Denny Chin in New York rejected authors' arguments against digitizing books without copyright holder permission, and he granted Google's motion for summary judgment. I'm sure Chris Meadows will chime in on this since he's more up on copyright law and this sort of thing than I am, but I did find this quote interesting: In my view, Google Books provides significant public benefits. It advances the progress of the arts and sciences, while maintaining respectful consideration for the rights of authors and other...