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  1. #1
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    Default Affiliate sites sued over copyright infringement

    The GPWA's Aaron Todd just wrote an interesting piece about how copyright infringement suits involving content from the Las Vegas Review-Journal have been filed against at least 81 Web site owners over the last few months.

    The suits are being filed by a second party, Las Vegas firm Righthaven. Righthaven acquires the LVRJ content and then sues the Web sites who run that content.

    The Las Vegas Sun has been reporting on this issue for a number of weeks.

    From the GPWA:

    The Sun has reported that most of the Web site owners had no knowledge of the suits against them until they were contacted by the Sun for comment.

    "We perceive there to be millions, if not billions, of infringements out there," Righthaven CEO Steve Gibson told Wired.com. In several of the cases being pursued by Righthaven, the copyrighted content was a story the Review-Journal had written about the webmaster or his/her organization.

    Most (if not all) of those sued have posted word-for-word articles from the Review-Journal in their entirety. Many of those being sued had indicated that the Review-Journal was the source of the material and provided a link back to the original article; those actions provide transparency but are not sufficient to be in compliance with copyright law.

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  3. #2
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    One of the webmasters being sued is none other than our very own Mojo.

    Righthaven on Monday also sued Paula Bliss, identified as the registrant of the www.gamblingmojo.com website. A June 3 R-J story on Nevada regulators warning casinos not to do business with Internet gambling companies was posted on that site without authorization, the lawsuit says. Records show the R-J was credited as the source of the story.
    "I have been using `AGA SmartBrief' articles and I always link back to the source. It was my understanding that articles could be used provided there was a link back,'' Bliss said Monday, adding she closed the blog portion of the website after learning of the lawsuit. "Apologies for my misunderstanding.''
    Source: http://www.lasvegassun.com/news/2010...opyright-suit/
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  5. #3
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    One of the webmasters being sued is none other than our very own Mojo.
    I don't think this will be happening well I hope not anyway. The story sounds more like an extortion attempt by the persons writing these articles. Throw out some bait catch a fish then take them to court.

    JMO

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    that does sound pretty gross, especially the bit about the content "pirated" often being an article about the accused site.

    i wonder where they draw the line - can i quote a paragraph? a sentence? can i link to the article using the headline (as many forums auto-create) or is the title of the article protected as well?
    Feel free to PM with mutually beneficial opportunities; we do not sell links on our sites. Some sample pages: sell PokerStars tournament dollars| Rush poker

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    Pretty cool idea of Righthaven going around and purchasing copyrights for articles then scouring the web looking for infringement. A different spin on making a living I suppose.

    Leaves me wondering how long it would take me to find Righthaven doing the same thing they so much deplore.

    IMO a link back to the originating article is acknowledgment. Much like a most books carry sections for contributors and acknowledgments. Maybe I am naive on the subject but some how it does makes sense.

    Think I mentioned this before as it been suggested contributors for Wikipedia forfeit their copyrights. That now that makes me wonder if the articles in question can be found on Wikipedia.

    In the end I think RH premeditated their actions which I do find interesting.

    Love to hear more on the subject.

    Just a Thought

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    So, they purchased the rights and then went hunting for technical infringers? That sounds like patent trolls who purchase patents and then make up weak lawsuits. They should have just sent an email, but they have to go directly to litigation?

    Sorry your a victim Mojo. I certainly feel for you. Please keep us updated.

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    Borrowing a page from patent trolls, the CEO of fledgling Las Vegas-based Righthaven has begun buying out the copyrights to newspaper content for the sole purpose of suing blogs and websites that re-post those articles without permission. And he says he’s making money.

    “Frankly, I think we’re having tremendous success at a number of levels,” Gibson says. “We file new complaints every day.”

    Read More Wired.com
    Ouch!!! Not to many websters, hackers, etc... Will not be to happy with this approach. This type of greed is never welcome IMO.

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    In the end, I may never link to any of their articles again....

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    Firstly, let me say I'm sorry to see Mojo going through this.

    Secondly, ZOMG, the guy actually buys right so he can troll for infringements? How despicable. That would explain why there was no communications before the suit was filed to ask, politely, that the alleged copyrighted content be removed from the website. I assume there were no such requests, as Mojo would have certainly removed any offending content immediately. It's just how she is - she's a good and honest person.

    Good grief!
    Janet

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    Is there not some kind of "due process" you need to follow, ie. communicating the issue with the webmaster, before taking action?

    The internet is about linking. I'll bet there are a lot of angles available to avoid payment, and I'll bet there are a lot of people out there with the right knowledge who could offer free advice.

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    I don't know if there is, I was once served papers for a one million $ lawsuit about a copyright (not in this industry).

    No notice, nothing.

    The funny thing was, it was a keyword suggested by word tracker and I used it as such. Turns out it was someone's brand name for an item. (not well known at all).

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  23. #12
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    Default

    I can ask Vin (Casino City Managing Editor) for his thoughts on the do's and don'ts of article linking. Vin runs into people everyday stealing his articles. I am curious from a publishers perspective which ones he goes after and which ones he feels are alright.

    Would this be of interest to anyone?
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    Quote Originally Posted by Anthony View Post
    I can ask Vin (Casino City Managing Editor) for his thoughts on the do's and don'ts of article linking. Vin runs into people everyday stealing his articles. I am curious from a publishers perspective which ones he goes after and which ones he feels are alright.

    Would this be of interest to anyone?
    Great idea Anthony - I'd love to hear his perspective on this issue.
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  26. #14
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    Quote Originally Posted by Fergie View Post
    Secondly, ZOMG, the guy actually buys right so he can troll for infringements?
    Is that what he is actually doing?

    Go out do a search for news articles - find an article that is on 100s if not 1000s of sites then buy the rights to that article - then try and intimidate all those sites into paying you? If that is what he is doing, he seems like the criminal - surely thats not what he is doing - is it?

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    If that is what he is doing, he seems like the criminal - surely thats not what he is doing - is it?
    Apparently so according to many sources Wired being one. Do a search on the company and it becomes very clear.

    Food for thought click here or facebook

    There were some oddities in the way RightHaven was acting, starting with the fact that it gives no warning to sites and doesn't send a DMCA takedown. It goes straight to suing... and then quickly demands a settlement fee.
    source: here
    People are pissed right off!

    greek39
    Last edited by pgaming; 1 August 2010 at 1:59 pm.
    Greek39

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    I read the company profile and the mission statement from the SEO. They are extorting people. The guy literally says that he wants to settle for the amount they defendant would spend for a retainer. That's extortion. He's not even discreet about it.

    Any serious webmaster could be victim to them.

    Anthony, I certainly would be interested in the publisher's perspective. From the SEO perspective the link is way more valuable than the content.

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    They are extorting people
    In a nutshell I would have too agree.

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    I agree that it not only appears that is what they are doing, but I thought I remember seeing that they admitted this.

    Why do a bunch of lawyers think it's ok to purchase rights to content for the express purposes of filing infringement lawsuits against others?

    If they cared about the content, and what they are telling the court, then they would do a whois on the domain, and send an email as to the infringements.

    Then, if after a reasonable amount of time, any infringements they warned the domain owners of that were not followed up on I could understand the suits.

    And trying to read the godlike forums are very difficult. Those that post there constantly quote whole posts....(the users don't understand it's such a waste to quote 28 lines from a post and then post a single line response)

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    It's a pathetic hussle which will surely backfire when people stop linking to LVRJ articles in their droves. I agree it's also effective extortion, some LV pretty boy dressed in a nice suit behaving no differently to some Sicilian gangster running around the local shopkeepers demanding his 20%.

    There should be a legal angle here, like having to give notice / request content removal before demanding money. If / when it's found, this scam artist should be obliged to give back every penny. I hope people are seriously looking into this.

    Quoting and linking up relevant content is the whole point of the internet, FF's sake.
    Last edited by Caruso; 1 August 2010 at 6:07 pm.

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