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Google and Microsoft Sued By Mini Music Label

Soulskill posted more than 4 years ago | from the blame-the-internet dept.

Google 105

carre4 writes "Blue Destiny Records has sued both Google and Microsoft for allegedly 'facilitating and enabling' distribution of copyrighted songs illegally. The suit alleges that RapidShare runs 'a distribution center for unlawful copies of copyrighted works.' RapidShare is helped by Google and Microsoft, which benefit from the ad relationships, according to the suit. Blue Destiny has attempted to link to pages with RapidShare links to their music via DMCA takedown notices, and Google has, apparently, not complied, while Microsoft's Bing site has removed the links. RapidShare, for its part, is based outside of the US and does not accept DMCA notices."

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Remove the Internet. (1, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#30414124)

Changing the order around a little here...

Blue Destiny has attempted to link to pages with RapidShare links to their music via DMCA takedown notices, and Google has, apparently, not complied, while Microsoft's Bing site has removed the links.

[...]

Blue Destiny Records has sued both Google and Microsoft for allegedly 'facilitating and enabling' distribution of copyrighted songs illegally.

So, what lesson should we take away from this?

Re:Remove the Internet. (2, Informative)

maxume (22995) | more than 4 years ago | (#30414170)

Blue Destiny's lawyer doesn't have any ethics?

Re:Remove the Internet. (2, Insightful)

Duradin (1261418) | more than 4 years ago | (#30414660)

99.999% of the time a lawyer's ethic is entirely "If I'm being paid by the client it is ethical to act in his self described best interests".

Re:Remove the Internet. (4, Insightful)

MrNaz (730548) | more than 4 years ago | (#30414722)

Only a lawyer would claim that.

Anyone else would point out that in the real world, clients defer to the advice of lawyers when deciding what is in their best interest, and lawyers ensure that whatever the client *thinks* is in their best interest, is in fact the course of action that yields the highest number of billable hours.

Re:Remove the Internet. (1)

WGFCrafty (1062506) | more than 4 years ago | (#30416826)

Only a lawyer would claim that.

Anyone else would point out that in the real world, clients defer to the advice of lawyers when deciding what is in their best interest, and lawyers ensure that whatever the client *thinks* is in their best interest, is in fact the course of action that yields the highest number of billable hours.

Exactly. Fixed:

If I'm being paid by the client it is ethical to act in his self described best interests, as long as possible, because money buys stuff, like ethics and luxury cars.

RAPIDSHARE is in EAST GERMANY !! so now you know!! (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#30417420)

Kommies uber alles !!

Re:Remove the Internet. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#30414404)

What lesson? Seriously... it's Saturday morning, and the slashdot summary is poorly worded and full of grammatical errors, leading to mass confusion, dogs and cats living together, etc.

Obeying DMCA doesn't mean you can't get sued (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#30414476)

Bing removed the links and still got sued.

That is what GP mean anyways... Personally, I wouldn't take it to mean much. At least not before we see how will it affect the court case.

Re:Remove the Internet. (1)

V!NCENT (1105021) | more than 4 years ago | (#30415432)

Blue Destiny Records: Hey Rapidshare. We saw that somebody uploaded a few songs without our permission. We have copyright on them. Could you maybe remove them for us please? If you could do that than we would be very grateful for that.
Rapidshare: Hey what a kind email. I suppose we could notify the uploader and take it down.

But this happened instead:

Blue Destiny Records: Hey you fothermuckers! You got our copyrighted material on your website! Take it the fsck down or we will sue you!
Rapidshare: Pardon? Fsck off! There is no DMCA in my country, assholes!
Blue Destiny Records: Fsckers! We will cut of their earnings! We will sue Goole and Microsoft instead because I need an extra house with a pool on a remote island! My neighbours have that too, so we got to have it!

Sue Microsoft (3, Insightful)

jrkotrla (690946) | more than 4 years ago | (#30414142)

Although it could (potentially, I suppose) be argued that their software (MS Windows) does have significant non-infringing uses, I think it's fairly obvious that 90%+ of all illegal file-sharing takes place on systems that utilize Microsoft software technologies. RIAA meet Bill.

Re:Sue Microsoft (1, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#30414268)

While it does have non-infringing uses I'd also say 90%+ of all illegal file-sharing is done with electricity from power companies.
They can afford to bail out the RIAA too.

Re:Sue Microsoft (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#30414530)

I'd also say 90%+ of all illegal file-sharing is done with electricity from power companies.

True, but also remember that 90%+ of illegal file-sharing is done by people, many of whom actually don't have any substantial non-infringing uses.

Re:Sue Microsoft (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#30414614)

You're right but what is the best way to stop the spread of copyright infringing people? Maybe we need a slashdot poll.

1. DRM implanted at birth.
2. A blank media style tax on all births.
3. Close the ana-lobe hole. Replace everyone's ears with a parking meter style payment slot.
4. CowboyNeal and Rick Astley singing an Xmas duet.

Re:Sue Microsoft (1)

MrNaz (730548) | more than 4 years ago | (#30414764)

I think 4 would work. After that, everyone would lose all taste for music, and piracy would stop.

Re:Sue Microsoft (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#30415018)

Wow a song that makes you hate music, I've got to hear that!

You got a torrent?

Re:Sue Microsoft (1)

hairyfeet (841228) | more than 4 years ago | (#30417968)

I don't have a torrent but I can give you the video! [youtube.com] And NO it is NOT a Rickroll, it is MUCH worse.../shudders at the horror of evilly bad music

Re:Sue Microsoft (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#30418294)

Actually, that is the *best* music video.

Hey baby, wake up from your asleep!

Re:Sue Microsoft (1)

hairyfeet (841228) | more than 4 years ago | (#30418432)

Well I suppose it is the "best" if you think horribly bad cheesy rhymes that sound like what a drunk that only knows English as a third language would try to use to get laid at a bar a 2AM is high art.

Of course lines like "my blue jeans is tight, so onto my love rocket climb" are almost so bad they are good, in a cheesy movie kind of...../checks video again/....nope its just horribly bad.

Re:Sue Microsoft (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#30418920)

whoosh!

I can't believe you've never heard of Molvania.

Re:Sue Microsoft (2, Funny)

MrNaz (730548) | more than 4 years ago | (#30414752)

But remember that people were all created by God. Thus, Blue Destiny staff should all jump off a cliff in order to expedite their meeting him to take up the issue.

Re:Sue Microsoft (1)

Dekker3D (989692) | more than 4 years ago | (#30416872)

hey.. that logic can apply to all sorts of companies. awesome! let's go tell the RIAA! also, this kind of post up there.. ^ is why slashdot needs a "+1 pure WIN" option.

Re:Sue Microsoft (1)

NekoIncardine (838965) | more than 4 years ago | (#30417058)

I would argue, instead, for showing multiple moderations, so that both "Funny" and "Insightful" can be applied visibly. If only because "pure WIN" would probably require an "epic FAIL" counterpart, and I'm pretty sure that would make the moderation environment worse than it already is, sadly.

Re:Sue Microsoft (1)

Dekker3D (989692) | more than 4 years ago | (#30419354)

oh dear. anything about any os.. or any console.. or any law..

i see what you mean. my post would be the first to deserve one for even bringing it up :P

Re:Sue Microsoft (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#30420212)

Although it could (potentially, I suppose) be argued that their software (MS Windows) does have significant non-infringing uses, I think it's fairly obvious that 90%+ of all illegal file-sharing takes place on systems that utilize Microsoft software technologies. RIAA meet Bill.

And how many of those illegal file sharers actually got legal copies of Windows? It's the ISPs who should be sued, they enabled illegal downloads of both music and operating systems.

Sue the White Pages (5, Insightful)

Norsefire (1494323) | more than 4 years ago | (#30414206)

So if someone finds an address in the White Pages and robs their house the homeowner should sue the White Pages?

Re:Sue the White Pages (1, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#30414320)

Of course not.
He should sue the paper company that makes the paper of the White Pages.
Or the one that makes the ink, whichever has more money.

Re:Sue the White Pages (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#30414348)

That's the perspective many corporate rightsholders take, yes.

Re:Sue the White Pages (2, Interesting)

rtaylor (70602) | more than 4 years ago | (#30414394)

If the publisher who puts out the book received a percentage of the spoils from the robbery, then probably.

Re:Sue the White Pages (1)

c6gunner (950153) | more than 4 years ago | (#30414912)

If the publisher who puts out the book received a percentage of the spoils from the robbery, then probably.

Except that's not the case here. This is more akin to a the robber having to pay for his copy of the White Pages, as well as possibly paying to have his number listed in the "for sale" section of the Yellow Pages.

Re:Sue the White Pages (1)

TubeSteak (669689) | more than 4 years ago | (#30414916)

If the publisher who puts out the book received a percentage of the spoils from the robbery, then probably.

If the publisher (Google, Bing) has no knowledge of the crime, it's rather hard to make the claim that the publisher is an accessory.
And since these guys are dumb enough to file in a US Court, the DMCA exemptions and requirements makes all their claims go away.

Anyways, here's the case: BLUES DESTINY RECORDS, LLC v. GOOGLE, INC. et al
http://docs.justia.com/cases/federal/district-courts/florida/flndce/3:2009cv00538/56427/1/ [justia.com]

And here are the search terms being complained about:
"Roy Powers Firing Line"
"Peter McGraw More McGraw"
"Ronny Sessum"

The DMCA does *not* make the case go away (2, Interesting)

pem (1013437) | more than 4 years ago | (#30415338)

if, as claimed, google ignored the DMCA takedown notices.

I actually had the misfortune to have to send google a takedown notice after our neighborhood's property manager put some of our newsletters online at a public place (they were already available on a different website via password). I got the idiot property manager to take them down (but only after threatening him with going to the state board of realtors for violating his fiduciary duty), but google was actually a *lot* harder. In the end, I was never sure whether they responded to my takedown notice, or whether the newsletters just rolled off the cache. (FWIW, Microsoft Live!, at the time, took them down almost immediately.)

In any case, forcing google to take the takedown process more seriously and deal with it more expeditiously can only be a good thing, IMHO.

Re:The DMCA does *not* make the case go away (0)

ymgve (457563) | more than 4 years ago | (#30419668)

Yes, it's Google's problem that you don't know how to use robots.txt.

Re:The DMCA does *not* make the case go away (1)

X0563511 (793323) | more than 4 years ago | (#30420206)

Please go back and read #30415338 [slashdot.org] again.

Here, I'll make it easy for you:

"... after our neighborhood's property manager put some of our newsletters online at a public place"

Re:Sue the White Pages (1, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#30415206)

What if the thing robbed was a very long prime number written in the front door which the robber memorized? We are supposing this thief did that because he is an appassionato of very long prime numbers, not because he intended to sell the number.

(I'm just taking the analogy to it's logical extreme)

Re:Sue the White Pages (1)

clone53421 (1310749) | more than 4 years ago | (#30415376)

Google gets revenue from searches by displaying ads and by sponsored links.

The White Pages does the same thing.

Re:Sue the White Pages (1)

cdrguru (88047) | more than 4 years ago | (#30417158)

Not quite. Google gets revenue from displaying ads on sites they direct people to through their searches. You might see some ads on the search page, but the real kicker is getting you into a site where there are 10 more ads and every time you click something in that site there are 10 more. I'd say there is at least a five-to-one ratio between search ads and web site ads in terms of revenue.

Re:Sue the White Pages (1)

stephanruby (542433) | more than 4 years ago | (#30419616)

A percentage? You're mistaken, Google doesn't get a percentage, it gets paid upfront a set fee for serving keywords. What if you got that information from calling 411 instead and just paid 50 cents upfront for you to get that information? Are you saying 411 should be held liable.

Re:Sue the White Pages (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#30414784)

what clueless drivel.
if there was an entry in the white pages saying "Houses that are empty this weekend, and location of keys" you bet your ass they would get sued.

Try and get a sense of fucking perspective before drooling out the pro-piracy content-creator hating bullshit that spews out of the slashdot hive 'mind'

Re:Sue the White Pages (1)

ozydingo (922211) | more than 4 years ago | (#30416010)

if there was an entry in the white pages saying "Houses that are empty this weekend, and location of keys"

So tell me, where's the "illegal filesharing links" Google search filter?

Norsefire's analogy ain't perfect. Yours is worse. If we really wanted to try to make this analogy fit, it might somewhere in between Norsefire's and the following: the Yellow Pages listing a business that sells you catalogs of houses that are empty this weekend.

Re:Sue the White Pages (1)

Maxo-Texas (864189) | more than 4 years ago | (#30416180)

Well... what we need.. is a CAR analogy!

Google is like the car that you get in and drive around town in.
While driving, you see a sign on the side of the road-- someone selling hand-made CD's on the side of the road and get some.
Then you see a billboard for a strip-joint, so you pull off the road and help a girl with daddy issues get through college.
Back in your car, you see a sign for some roses and get some for your wife.

So your wife includes Google Auto company in the divorce lawsuit when she discovers lipstick on your collar since the auto helped you get to the club.

But on that basis, the pirate bay is just a map of strip joints (no actual nudity- more of a yellow pages) or a map of high crime areas (they sell drugs in this part of town).

There is really no essential difference between google and tpb. One is just easier to use than the other. And one is richer than the other.

Re:Sue the White Pages (1)

gbarules2999 (1440265) | more than 4 years ago | (#30416864)

What clueless drivel.
If Google and Microsoft were actively publishing information required to pirate music - not just picking up information, but actively publishing it - they would get sued to hard they'd have string coming out of their ass.

Try and get a sense of santiy before drooling out the "OMG they dun it again" nonsense that spews out of the anti-slashdot brigade who hate this website so much they post every five minutes about how shitty it is.

Re:Sue the White Pages (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#30414810)

Not the same thing.

There are legitimate reasons for someone's address to be listed in the white pages.

Re:Sue the White Pages (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#30414892)

How about suing the libraries of the world. I can check out books and movies and copy them to my hearts content! Is it time to ban books and videos from libraries?

Re:Sue the White Pages (1)

Antony-Kyre (807195) | more than 4 years ago | (#30418880)

Maybe it is time to require books to be written in a special ink, requiring special glasses in order to view the books. And when copied, that ink doesn't show up.

Seriously? (3, Interesting)

gman003 (1693318) | more than 4 years ago | (#30414262)

They know, absolutely, that they're going to lose. So what reason could they have for suing? Well, they're about as unknown on the Internet as possible. No Wikipedia entry, and their website seems to be hidden, unless they call themselves "Blues Destiny Records" when not filing frivolous lawsuits. Maybe they just want some attention? Which raises the question: Is a lawsuit against the two biggest companies in technology cheaper than buying some ads?

Re:Seriously? (1)

ScrewMaster (602015) | more than 4 years ago | (#30414540)

Which raises the question: Is a lawsuit against the two biggest companies in technology cheaper than buying some ads?

Probably, but it's also substantially more dangerous.

Re:Seriously? (1)

grimJester (890090) | more than 4 years ago | (#30414664)

No Wikipedia entry, and their website seems to be hidden, unless they call themselves "Blues Destiny Records" when not filing frivolous lawsuits

Apparently both Blues Destiny Records and Blue Destiny Recordings exist, but not Blue Destiny Records. Anyway, a lawsuit by a small label may be the big four's way of either limiting their risk if they lose or getting around some previous agreement with Google. And by limiting risk I mean avoiding big "Sony, Universal, EMI and Warner sue Google!" headlines when there's a big risk they'll lose.

Re:Seriously? (2, Informative)

RattFink (93631) | more than 4 years ago | (#30415804)

[quote]have appeared when users search Google for the Roy Powers song "Firing Line."[/quote]

Apperently this artist is carried by Blues Destiny Records here [bluesdestinyrecords.com] . TFA would be wrong.

Re:Seriously? (2, Insightful)

Reziac (43301) | more than 4 years ago | (#30416122)

Aside from the fact that I never heard of them before... $25 per album?! I think we already know why their sales might be down, eh??

Re:Seriously? (1, Informative)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#30416972)

Aside from the fact that I never heard of them before... $25 per album?! I think we already know why their sales might be down, eh??

Curious as to what cost 25 dollars I clicked the grandparent's link to see. The price tag is for their VINYL releases. While 25 dollars seems pricey for a vinyl they put an emphasis on it being 180 grams vinyl. Looking further into this it seems to be some audiophile format that uses a thicker vinyl so the price isn't out of line. Their CDs are 13 bucks, a double album for 25, and a digital download is 10. None of which seems to imply they have a reality distortion field on their prices.

You sir are just whoring.

Re:Seriously? (1)

Reziac (43301) | more than 4 years ago | (#30420594)

An AC says I'm being unfair, but after further review, I disagree:

The price may not be bad for what it is, but vinyl (which appears to be what they're primarily pushing) is still a VERY small market, and alt-blues isn't exactly a mass market genre either. If you sell a fairly-priced yet expensive item, or one that has only limited appeal, its very nature means you will have a limited market, and you cannot fairly blame someone else for your small market. Which is what it appears they're trying to do.

Re:Seriously? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#30415142)

Perhaps it's Streisand's record company.

Re:Seriously? (1)

HatRoot (875638) | more than 4 years ago | (#30415524)

""Maybe they just want some attention? Which raises the question: Is a lawsuit against the two biggest companies in technology cheaper than buying some ads?"" Um... for the lawyer or the company? Seems to me it's the lawyers reach, not the DMCA that is in question here.

Re:Seriously? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#30418186)

Dude they are stealing someones hard work the artist is just ah poor boy from New Orleans

Good thing (1)

Idiomatick (976696) | more than 4 years ago | (#30414288)

I hope lots of companies without billions of dollars sue Google and others like this. It will build up a precendent of this is stupid. So whenever the major labels try it they will have to work extra hard.

Re:Good thing (1)

m509272 (1286764) | more than 4 years ago | (#30414378)

You never know. Perhaps they are being funded by the very ones they are suing to establish some precedent. For sure it's at the very least the cheapest global advertising you can get even if it never goes to trial or they simply drop it. You pay the couple of hundred dollars or less it costs to file and they get 100's of thousands or more of free publicity.

Re:Good thing (1)

blitzkrieg3 (995849) | more than 4 years ago | (#30418412)

it almost looks like that's exactly what they're trying to do. Surely they know they can't win, and they probably won't get a huge amount of converts just by disallowing RS access.
I know they probably are sueing in earnest but it seems as though they're trying to take the wind out of record companies sails. (IE you can't sue the ISP for being the medium)

US Jurisdiction (1, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#30414308)

"....RapidShare, for its part, is based outside of the US and does not accept DMCA notices."

This is an important concept regarding the internet that most politicians still don't get.

Re:US Jurisdiction (1)

click2005 (921437) | more than 4 years ago | (#30414360)

This is an important concept regarding the internet that most politicians haven't fixed yet.

Re:US Jurisdiction (1)

Wowsers (1151731) | more than 4 years ago | (#30415584)

This is an important concept regarding the internet that most politicians haven't had any brown envelopes to bother with fixing yet.

Not surprising (1)

Mathinker (909784) | more than 4 years ago | (#30414362)

> This is an important concept regarding the internet that most politicians still don't get.

It's not clear that "they don't get it". You are assuming that what a politician says is connected with what he wants done or thinks can be done rather than being connected with what he wants others to think about him (so he gets reelected, perhaps via getting more campaign contributions).

Re:US Jurisdiction (1)

SirKveldulv (1073650) | more than 4 years ago | (#30414452)

Rapidshare, if told about it, will remove files that infringe on copyright though. http://rapidshare.com/abuse.html [rapidshare.com] It's not DMCA, but the result is basically the same. They will also fingerprint/hash files and remove such files proactively in future. Rapidshare make their money selling premium subscriptions. For the free downloads, they show ads, which I'm sure will be something other than google in very short order. I'm quite surprised they are using adsense at all really.

Re:US Jurisdiction (1)

cdrguru (88047) | more than 4 years ago | (#30417116)

Not use AdSense? Why not? AdSense gives you an anonymous, protected way to separate the advertiser from the placement of ads. How many people would willingly call up a porn link site or warez site to advertise there? Right, nobody. AdSense gives the porn linker and warez site an easy way to display ads that the advertiser never knows anything about. And, more importantly, cannot exert any control over specifically what sites their ads appear on. In exchange, they get a cheaper rate and this pretty much drives other advertising channels out of the market. As has pretty much happened.

Google never posted the links in the first place! (1)

Sirusjr (1006183) | more than 4 years ago | (#30414368)

Its not like google runs a message board where people post these rapidshare links and is being sent notices to run the message board better and remove infringing links. If that were the case then google and microsoft both would be advised if not required to remove those links if they want to avoid a suit. Google, on the other hand, simply runs a web site that searches other web sites and finds keywords without discrimination between keywords that are linked to rapidshare links and keywords that aren't. I fail to see how it is google's responsibility to comply with a takedown notice although it would be nice to have the forums with rapidshare links no longer showing up in google.

Re:Google never posted the links in the first plac (-1)

teknopurge (199509) | more than 4 years ago | (#30414464)

You're making excuses for google. Google wrote software that makes posting of information faster and more efficient - doesn't mean new rules of law suddenly apply. If someone kills by stabbing them in the head with a knife it's the same charge as if they used a gun, everything else being equal. Obviously the gun is the more efficient way to get the job done. Bottom line is google harvests, formats and makes available this data, which makes them directly liable. Under the DMCA it's different if they are just the ISP that runs someones site with the information, but Google actually processes and presents data with it's own software, which is where the culpability.

Re:Google never posted the links in the first plac (2, Interesting)

Martin Blank (154261) | more than 4 years ago | (#30414534)

If someone kills by stabbing them in the head with a knife it's the same charge as if they used a gun, everything else being equal.

Actually, in most of the US, using a firearm in the commission of a violent crime is a slightly different charge set containing an automatic sentence extension, usually of five or ten years. Killing someone by stabbing them in the head with a knife would carry the same charge as caving in the head with a hammer, though.

Re:Google never posted the links in the first plac (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#30414814)

Which is faster, though?

Re:Google never posted the links in the first plac (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#30418948)

More importantly... Which is more satisfying?

Re:Google never posted the links in the first plac (5, Insightful)

ScrewMaster (602015) | more than 4 years ago | (#30414886)

Bottom line is google harvests, formats and makes available this data, which makes them directly liable.

Wow. You read like an RIAA playbook. Google makes no data available, they just link to it. That's what a search engine does. Google doesn't host any copyrighted music, and I'm sure you know that.

You're making excuses for google.

No more than you or anyone else makes for your ISP, when the media conglomerates try to turn them into a private police organization with enforcement powers. Google may "facilitate" infringement (which is the same weak argument that the RIAA has used over and over) but that doesn't mean that what Google does is or should be automatically actionable. Furthermore, copyright is not just about absolute powers granted to rightsholders (although that is their interpretation of copyright's function in society): it's supposed to be about a balance of rights, with We the People intended to be the ultimate beneficiaries.

Google and similar organizations offer society tremendous benefits: should those be tossed by the wayside in order to preserve a legal fiction that serves to benefit wealthy corporations that only wish one thing: to become even more wealthy? At our expense? I don't think so. Personally, I think Google and all search engines should be completely immunized from any lawsuits resulting from their Web-crawling and indexing activities. Put it like this: if you don't want something to get noticed by a search engine ... don't publish it in the first place.

Google (and all the other big boys) respect the Robot Exclusion Protocol anyway, so nothing will get indexed directly from your site if you don't wish it to be. That's been the case for a long, long time ... nobody has any right to complain that a major search engine is indexing their works without authorization. So, what you're ultimately saying is that Google should be held responsible for other people publishing information on the Web without the rightsholders permission. Let the copyright holders go after those people, since they are the ones who are illegally distributing copyrighted works. What? There's hundreds of thousands of them and we can't afford to go after them all? Well ... that's just too goddamn bad. These people think they see a cheap way out by suing the search engine (in the same way the MPAA has gone after Torrent indexers.) The difference here is that a. major search engines offer a lot more than just links to copyrighted material and b. tend to have billions of dollars in the bank.

The world has moved on: the music business is not what it used to be and in fact will never be the same again. If you're a traditional music publisher, take note: attempting to turn back the clock will only hurt lots of people, and won't save you anyway. You need to accept a few facts, and then replace your upper management with people who can think and operate rationally in a radically changed business environment.

Keep in mind that the bloodsuckers who have run our publishing businesses for the past hundred years or so would cheerfully run Google, Yahoo, Bing, Apple and any other major technology corporation out of business if they could, if they perceive even the slightest threat from said companies. That's because they operate criminal organizations who only see their own needs as being of any concern, who wish to continue exploiting their captive creative minds while simultaneously extracting our wallets.

And before you come back and point out that if the big copyright cartels are allowed suffer from infringement, then the little ones will too ... well, that's not really the case. Smaller music businesses (ones that see modern telecommunications technology as a competitive edge and not a liability) are doing quite well. Even musicians who have bypassed the conventional route to getting their music out have found that they can do as well as, if not better than, they would ever have done signing with an old-line record label.

I have no sympathy for any company that allows its fear of the Internet to induce it throw lawsuits around, especially baseless ones.

Re:Google never posted the links in the first plac (3, Interesting)

Sfing_ter (99478) | more than 4 years ago | (#30415032)

I concur, except I see this as a great way to rid us of this issue. With all the $$ that Google & M$ have, and all the sway they get with their lobbying, it will be interesting to see who wins in this battle. If the record company wins, then the RIAAssholes step in and start fucking shit over. If G & M$ win, then you see more sites linking. Either way we get a clearer definition of what we will be allowed to do.

Re:Google never posted the links in the first plac (1)

cpghost (719344) | more than 4 years ago | (#30416922)

Google makes no data available, they just link to it.

This is the defense line of every bittorrent indexing site too, since .torrent files (and more recently magnet links) contain no copyrighted data at all. Still, "making available", even if only indirectly, has been criminalized in most jurisdictions, mostly due to US pressure via the WTO.

Even Sweden, home of The Pirate Bay, has been hard pressed to change their Copyright Law by adding "making available" to the list of taboos, which they did, thereby outlawing TPB, but also potentially every site like Google and Bing that fail to comply with DMCA takedown notices (even if DMCA is a US-only law... for now).

Re:Google never posted the links in the first plac (1)

teknopurge (199509) | more than 4 years ago | (#30417548)

Google makes no data available, they just link to it.

This is the defense line of every bittorrent indexing site too, since .torrent files (and more recently magnet links) contain no copyrighted data at all.

The last time I checked google provided a few sentences from the SERP which is content from the linked page. As the content is automatically copyrighted once posted, google is in fact displaying copyrighted material.

Re:Google never posted the links in the first plac (1)

ScrewMaster (602015) | more than 4 years ago | (#30418120)

As the content is automatically copyrighted once posted, google is in fact displaying copyrighted material.

Which is not, at least under U.S. law, illegal.

Re:Google never posted the links in the first plac (1)

teknopurge (199509) | more than 4 years ago | (#30418336)

I'm not saying it is or isn't - but a case can be made. Remember this boils down to google not willing to remove links, at the owner's request, to illegal copies of copyrighted work. I admit it's a gray area in the US, but google is more then passively facilitating the propagation of theft - their software is providing a value-add by making it easier for someone to get access to that illegal copy.

Re:Google never posted the links in the first plac (1)

ScrewMaster (602015) | more than 4 years ago | (#30418114)

Still, "making available", even if only indirectly, has been criminalized in most jurisdictions, mostly due to US pressure via the WTO.

Which returns to the point I was trying to make: should the major governments of the world permit the corrupting influence of a few large corporations to limit or destroy one of the major technological advances of our time? I mean, Jesus H. Christ, the content cartels and their front organizations (RIAA, MPAA, CRIA, BREIN, etc.) make an incredible amount of high-decibel public noise about"theft" and "stealing" and "public responsibility", and then turn right around and buy Congressmen and have hideous laws like the DMCA passed. You can smell the hypocrisy a mile away, and given the way these people have operated over the past century or more, and the way they treat both artists and customers alike, I really don't think they deserve any more special treatment. They've already had more than their due.

Hell, it's been demonstrated the the media outfits actually draft most of those laws (probably because they don't trust Congress to get it right any more than we do.)

Fact is, Google and the other search engines have done more for the individual, and more for the economies of many, many nations than all the music and motion picture conglomerates combined. As a software engineer, I use search constantly, and in fact I could not do my job anywhere near as well if I didn't have such ready access to volumes of useful information. Sure, the entertainment industry (and let's face it, those are the people that have been subverting governments and legal systems worldwide in order to protect their ill-gotten gains) employ some people, but you know what? There are far more people employed in other industries, who shouldn't have their futures diminished in order to make a few few companies that much wealthier.

It's my country that's behind a lot of this (although the leaders of other nations most assuredly are letting their own people down as well), and as an American I can say this: the state of copyright today is a crock of shit, and the corruption has become so obvious that it makes me want to throw up.

Re:Google never posted the links in the first plac (1)

clone53421 (1310749) | more than 4 years ago | (#30415422)

Google wrote software that makes posting of information faster and more efficient - doesn't mean new rules of law suddenly apply. If someone kills by stabbing them in the head with a knife it's the same charge as if they used a gun, everything else being equal. Obviously the gun is the more efficient way to get the job done.

I’m desperately searching for some logical sense in that metaphor.

What I’m seeing is that you think Google created a more efficient tool to infringe copyright.

I.e. they built the gun.

CHARGE THE GUN MANUFACTURERS WITH MURDER! YEE-AHHH!

Re:Google never posted the links in the first plac (1)

teknopurge (199509) | more than 4 years ago | (#30415962)

No, you missed the point entirely.

My analogy provided 2 similar methods to come to the same result: knife vs. gun. The knife represents the slow, non-mechanical way to do something while the gun is the evolved, machine-based method. It has ZERO to do with gun manufactures, and if that insolent position is all you could come up with I truly feel for your cognitive abilities; it had to do with the person wielding the weapon. No, before you get lost, google is not the weapon, they are the person. The weapon is the information.

In this story there are [at least] 2 ways to get this media(for the sake of this discussion): 1. google/bing/yahoo/etc. linking to RS links and 2. doing some manual way of tracking the data down.(emails, usenet, wtf ever, etc..) My point was that search engines make it easier by using their software, they don't just regurgitate what they find. They provide value-add of some-kind or we wouldn't use them. SEs format, process, ranks and do a host of other things before we get a SERP after a query is submitted. All of that work their software does is surface area for liable.

Re:Google never posted the links in the first plac (1)

clone53421 (1310749) | more than 4 years ago | (#30419554)

The knife represents the slow, non-mechanical way to do something while the gun is the evolved, machine-based method.

Correct. Without the gun, murder would be less efficient. So who made the gun?

My point was that search engines make it easier by using their software, they don't just regurgitate what they find. They provide value-add of some-kind or we wouldn't use them. SEs format, process, ranks and do a host of other things before we get a SERP after a query is submitted. All of that work their software does is surface area for liable.

And by the exact same logic a gunsmith makes it easier to commit homicide by using his product.

You are the one who missed the point entirely.

Re:Google never posted the links in the first plac (1)

s0litaire (1205168) | more than 4 years ago | (#30414666)

The way I read the origional article, (not the Slashdot hackjob!) is that Blue Destiney Records (BDR) is suing Google and Microsoft NOT because if the links, but for the fact that Microsoft and Google profit from the filesharing activities through the ads placed on Rapidshares free pages.

Re:Google never posted the links in the first plac (1)

russotto (537200) | more than 4 years ago | (#30416782)

Right, it's a vicarious infringement case. One of the earliest vicarious infringement cases was about a flea market operator who sold space to vendors who sold infringing material; the operator was found liable despite being unaware of the infringement, because he profited from the infringement and had the ability to prevent it (by kicking out the offending vendors).

This case is even weaker, because Google does not have the ability to prevent the infringement, but in general the courts will accept any old secondary infringement theory; they love widening the scope of copyright.

Blue Destiny's reasoning is unsound (1)

517714 (762276) | more than 4 years ago | (#30414678)

FTA: "The suits insists that Google and Microsoft benefit financially because they generate ad revenue from search results. And both companies have received DMCA takedown notices requesting removal of the links in question."

Google would generate several times the revenue by placing the allegedly illegal download links lower so that one would perform multiple searches rather than finding them with the first click. If there is a financial incentive for Google to manipulate results, it would be to lower the rankings of those links.
 

Re:Blue Destiny's reasoning is unsound (1)

AfroThunder215 (1699044) | more than 4 years ago | (#30415242)

Unless you're talking about lowering the rankings as a solution to the lawsuit, it seems to me that lowering the rankings of a highly-sought after website would do nothing more than drive away customers. If I'm searching for something, unless I know it's obscure or on a specific page, I usually don't bother with going past the first page.

Business plan (2, Insightful)

HangingChad (677530) | more than 4 years ago | (#30414724)

...RapidShare, for its part, is based outside of the US and does not accept DMCA notices.

  • Launch groundless legal action against company with $154 billion net worth.
  • ????
  • Profit!!!

What could go wrong?

Re:Business plan (1)

wo1verin3 (473094) | more than 4 years ago | (#30418922)

That part of the summary is not false but is very misleading.

While they are based outside of the US, they do respond within 24 hours on the takedown notices I've sent them over the past 2 years. I've provided them all the information asked for and each time the files were removed and checksum of those specific files blacklisted.

More Info: http://www.rapidshare.com/abuse.html [rapidshare.com]

How does the DMCA apply? (1)

mark-t (151149) | more than 4 years ago | (#30414948)

Even if something is copyright infringement, how does the DMCA apply for something like music, which (generally) does not require any sort of decryption to digitize.

Re:How does the DMCA apply? (2, Informative)

pem (1013437) | more than 4 years ago | (#30415412)

There are multiple parts to the DMCA, which is an update to copyright law. Google and wikipedia are your friends here, but basically, without the "safe harbor" provisions of the DMCA, any ISP or search engine would be at major risk.

I am reminded of a line from Battlestar Galactica (1)

mr_da3m0n (887821) | more than 4 years ago | (#30415016)

"Point you finger back far enough and some germ gets blamed for splitting in two." How fitting.

Patently false. (3, Informative)

clone53421 (1310749) | more than 4 years ago | (#30415330)

From TFA:

“Google’s consistent and prominent ranking of links to illegal ‘free’ downloads of [Blue Destiny’s] copyrighted recordings has devastated [Blue Destiny’s] business,” the suit reads, before pointing to specific RapidShare links that have appeared when users search Google for the Roy Powers song “Firing Line.”

It would appear, however, that Google is not linking directly to such downloads. It links to RapidShare landing pages where the download urls are listed. In other words, Google’s top “Roy Powers Firing Line” result points to a RapidShare page that serves up several links where you can download the song.

And even that is false! The Google results for “Roy Powers Firing Line” [google.com] are:

Roy Powers Firing Line rapidshare file downloads [rapidog.com]
Roy Powers Firing Line megaupload file downloads [megauploadbot.com]
Roy Powers - Firing Line (2009) rapidshare [zona-musical.com]
Roy Powers Music Firing Line Out Now! [roypowersmusic.com]
Roy Powers on MySpace Music - Free Streaming MP3s, Pictures ... [myspace.com]
Blues Destiny Records [bluesdestinyrecords.com]
Google and Microsoft sued for links to filesharing sites ... [tech-forums.net]
Ronny Sessum Funk'n Blues Man Album Out [ronnysessum.com]
Vans Triple Crown of Surfing [triplecrownofsurfing.com]

None of those URLs point to a RapidShare server!

Even the ones that look like they’d have RapidShare links are merely search engines or forums where the RapidShare links are found.

This is so false that it’s laughable. Also, can anyone say Streisand effect?

Re:Patently false. (1, Informative)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#30416774)

Also, can anyone say Streisand effect?

This might be their ultimate goal. Claim to sue giant companies, wait for tech sites to advertise their obscure company.

Re:Patently false. (1)

gmuslera (3436) | more than 4 years ago | (#30419152)

Maybe something that should Google do is to clean all pages from their index that have that author name and song title, as they don't know a priory if it is linking to a rapidshare-like server or forum that enables to illegally download that song. In fact, they should do that with anyone that complains. Avoiding piracy is more important than having any opportunity to be known.

Sue reality! (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#30416372)

Lets sue this Universe for the possible existence of anything harmful!

Contact Rapidshare? (1)

FSWKU (551325) | more than 4 years ago | (#30417560)

This page [rapidshare.com] seems to spell things out pretty clearly. Email them with your contact info, the links in question, and what the problem is (in this case, copyrighted content), and they will work with you to resolve the matter. Took all of 2 seconds to find.

But no, rather than have their content removed, they would rather make a huge stink about it to try and get attention and press coverage. As a previous poster pointed out, a nice civil email about the matter could have had this whole thing resolved in a day or two. Sure, the lawyers don't get to rack up billable hours, but the unethical prick who would recommend this course of action needs to walk off of a cliff anyway...

Re:Contact Rapidshare? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#30418240)

You are a twisted person they are stealing someones hard work Ronny Sessum
is just a poor artist from New Orleans
he dose not need press he has plenty he's a real peace of americana pie

I could be good (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#30419030)

I could be good: Google and MS will win this stupid lawsuit and set a precedent in the court.

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