STLR Link Roundup – February 5, 2010

This week on the STLR radar:

  • Freedom to Tinker conducts a “census” of files shared through BitTorrent, finding 99% of them to infringe copyright.
  • From Business Week: a Pittsburgh couple is suing Google for trespass because Google posted pictures of their residence, including their pool and driveway.
  • Italy will hold YouTube liable for uploads that infringe copyright or are libelous, Ars Technica reports, which would eliminate “safe harbor” rules that protect websites with user-generated content in the U.S. and the E.U (see our post on the Italian case against Google for failure to take down an offensive video here).
  • The Washington Post reports that the National Security Agency will help Google determine the source of the cyber-attacks Google suffered a month ago, an alliance that raises concerns among civil liberties and digital privacy advocates. The Electronic Privacy Information Center filed a Freedom of Information Act request with the NSA for records of its relationship with Google.
  • The Justice Department considers the Google Books settlement to be improved but still flawed even after the latest revisions, the New York Times reports. The D.O.J. stated its continued dissatisfaction with the antitrust and intellectual property implications of the settlement. See Ars Technica for a detailed explanation.
  • Wired asks: do American high school and junior high students have online free speech rights? If so, to what extent? Current rulings leave the answer to that question unclear.
  • From Ars Technica: senators and representatives are unhappy with the proposed merger between Comcast and NBC Universal. At the Senate and House hearings on Thursday February 4th, several members of Congress expressed worry and skepticism over the merger’s implications for competition and consumers’ interests.
  • The Authors Guild says its favorable attitude to the Google Books settlement was a deliberate contrast to the Recording Industry Association of America’s (RIAA’s) aggressive approach to copyright enforcement, Wired reports.

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