New Media Rights files follow-up comments in Copyright Office inquiry into remedies for small copyright claims

The Copyright Office has begun a process of considering creating a small claims court or system for small-scale copyright disputes.  This would affect the internet users and independent creators NMR assists significantly.

In our October 19, 2012 comments, we argue any small claims system will need to address misuse of copyright law, abuse of the DMCA takedown process, and the general discrepancy in how attorney’s fees and costs are awarded to prevailing defendants.

Abuses of copyright law are rampant in the current system. Creators and internet users regularly face baseless content removals and settlement demands.  Right now, much of this misuse and abuse takes place outside of the formal court system.  A small claims system for copyright would naturally lower the bar for copyright bullies to bring formal actions against defendants. 

Many of the defendants in the new system will be these same vulnerable independent creators and internet users already facing abuse in our informal system.  When considering such a significant change to the current copyright system, the Copyright Office must ensure that the new playing field that is created allows defendants an adequate opportunity to defend themselves and pursue those who abuse and misuse copyright law.
 

Read our full comments to see our specific recommendations!

You can also read our earlier comments in this proceeding here!

Thanks to legal interns Alex Johnson and Kyle Welch for their assistance in drafting these comments.

New Media Rights releases 20+ new videos, hundreds more upcoming

We've been steadily working on a new video series targeted at teaching artists, non-profits, tech startups, and internet consumers about internet law. You should subscribe to our channel if you haven't already, so you can know when new videos are uploaded each week.

We've been busy this Fall, working at the FCC on behalf of consumers, helping scores of creators, securing a new grant with the City of San Diego, and launching a new partnership as an independently funded program of California Western School of Law. Learn more, and meet the NMR team in our September newsletter!

A video to our community: Big news about our future!

We want to share some big news about the future of New Media Rights and make a few simple requests of you.

Click here to watch the announcement
Click here to watch the video!

We recently finalized a partnership with California Western School of Law.  We’ll still be providing the same quality one-to-one legal services and educational guides for internet users and independent creators, but now, as part of the California Western community, we’ll be able to expand what we do more than ever before.

We’re really excited to be part of the California Western community. The broader internet community will benefit from the increased availability of free and reduced fee legal services, and Cal Western Students will get real-world experience in internet and media law.

We are still completely independently funded, so please support us in starting this partnership off on the right foot

Click here to donate now!

Join New Media Rights in signing the Declaration of Internet Freedom to uphold basic rights in the digital world

New Media RIghts has joined a broad, international coalition of civil society groups calling on elected officials to sign the new Declaration of Internet Freedom and uphold basic rights in the digital world.

We encourage you to read and sign the Declaration, and encourage your elected officials to sign it as well.

 

Fighting for remix culture and against wireless shutdowns - May 2012 newsletter

New Media Rights has been busy helping creators and internet users all Spring, and we have alot to share about what we've accomplished! We're preparing to testify in front of the Copyright Office on behalf of remix artists. We've filed comments with the FCC criticizing the BART wireless phone shutdown in San Francisco. And we've directly assisted over 100 people since the year began with their specific legal issues.  Please stay tuned for some big news regarding the future of New Media Rights that we'll be announcing in the next few weeks.

New Media Rights files comments with the Federal Communications Commission on wireless service interruptions

New Media Rights filed comments April 30 with the Federal Communications Commission regarding intentional interruption of wireless services. This follows the August 2011 incident where BART chose to interrupt wireless services at its stations. This incident raised serious concerns regarding the authority of governmental agencies and other non-carrier third parties to disrupt wireless networks. The FCC opened a regulatory proceeding to review the issue.

Did you receive an errant copyright notice for Liberty Media Holding LLC v James March et al (10-cv-1809)?

Did you receive an errant copyright notice for Liberty Media Holding LLC v James March et al (10-cv-1809)? If you received any notice relating to this case, please email us at support@newmediarights.org or call us at 619-591-8870.

We recently spoke to an individual whose IP address was apparently identified in Liberty Media Holding LLC v James March et al (10-cv-1809), who contacted us when he received a notice from Verizon that his identity had been subpoenaed by Liberty Media Holdings.  The letter stated,
 
"The Plaintiffs have filed a lawsuit alleging that various people have perhaps infringed their copyright by illegally download and/or distributing a movie."  
 
The problem is, this case didn't have anything to do with copyright infringement related to illegal filesharing, and the defendant had received notice errantly.  Learn more and then contact us to share your story.

How to remove yourself from Jerk.com

Jerk.com is a website that appears to try to profit from consumers who are concerned about their online reputation.

We've recently heard from individuals who have come across Jerk.com after they Google themselves and find that they have a profile on Jerk.com.  You may be one of these individuals.  If so, please contact us at 619-591-8870 or support@newmediarights.org so we can help you address the issue.

Internet rights battles don't end with SOPA - February 2012 newsletter

What an amazing time for Internet rights!  Millions of internet users and creators like you put a stop to the Stop Online Piracy Act (SOPA) and Protect Intellectual Property Act (PIPA) in Congress.  These laws threatened free speech and innovation by allowing blocking of entire web services due to infringing content posted on a single webpage. 

You have the power to shape the future of a free and open internet, but Internet rights battles don't end with SOPA & PIPA. Wireless carriers, large media companies, and other gatekeepers continue to find ways to artificially limit your ability to access services and share content online. Our February newsletter explains how NMR has been working tirelessly on behalf of internet users, creators and consumers in the new year.

Read the entire newsletter!

New Media Rights files comments at the Copyright Office supporting the right to jailbreak mobile devices and lawfully reuse video content

New Media Rights has filed comments with the Copyright Office supporting three exemptions to the Digital Millennium Copyright Act’s anti-circumvention provisions.  Similar to our 2009 comment to the Copyright Office, this comment supports the right to bypass anti-circumvention technologies to a) allow individuals to take control of the apps and services they use on their mobile devices, and b) allow creators and internet users to reuse video content for fair use purposes.  Our 2012 comment also supports recommendations that these exemptions should be extended beyond their 2009 counterparts in two very important ways – we argue that jailbreaking should also apply to tablets and that the bypassing of anti-circumvention technology should include non-DVD sources.

The exemptions provide an important safety valve for otherwise lawful behavior by consumers and creators.

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