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EFFector - Volume 22, Issue 4 - EFF Calls on the FTC to Mitigate Damage Caused By DRM

EFFector Vol. 22, No. 04  February 13, 2009  editor@eff.org

A Publication of the Electronic Frontier Foundation
ISSN 1062-9424

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In our 499th issue:

* EFF CALLS ON THE FTC TO MITIGATE DAMAGE CAUSED BY DRM. In
public comments submitted earlier this week, EFF explained
how DRM, backed by the anti-circumvention provisions of the
Digital Millennium Copyright Act (DMCA), impedes innovation
and thwarts consumers' rights to make full use of their
digital music, movies, software, and videogames. EFF urged
the commission to study DRM's effect on competition in the
marketplace, investigate whether the effects of DRM are
fully disclosed to consumers, and promote a set of "Best
Practices" that, if followed, would help alleviate the
burdens of DRM for consumers.

EFF's comments were filed in conjunction with the FTC's
Town Hall on DRM, set for March 25 in Seattle. The Town
Hall is free and open to the public.

For the full press release:
http://www.eff.org/press/archives/2009/02/09

For more on the FTC Town Hall on DRM:
http://www.ftc.gov/opa/2008/12/drm.shtm

* SHARK AND THE PRCA HAVE SETTLED THEIR COPYRIGHT BATTLE
over YouTube videos, protecting the advocates' right to
publicize their critiques of animal treatment at rodeos and
creating a new model for handling takedown notices.

EFF represented the group Showing Animals Respect and
Kindness (SHARK), a non-profit organization that videotapes
and photographs rodeos in order to expose animal abuse,
injuries, and deaths. SHARK posted dozens of these critical
videos to YouTube throughout 2006 and 2007. When the
Professional Rodeo Cowboys Association (PRCA) falsely
claimed that 13 of the videos infringed PRCA copyrights,
YouTube disabled SHARK's entire account.

In a settlement announced yesterday, PRCA agreed that any
future copyright claims will be first sent to SHARK's video
contact and then reviewed by the PRCA's general counsel for
legal merit before any legal notices are sent to YouTube or
another video service. This settlement is part of EFF's No
Downtime for Free Speech Campaign, which works to protect
online expression in the face of baseless copyright claims.

For the full press release:
http://www.eff.org/press/archives/2009/02/12

For more on the No Downtime for Free Speech Campaign:
http://www.eff.org/issues/ip-and-free-speech

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EFF Updates

* Judge Seeks Briefing on Telecom Immunity
Chief Judge Vaughn Walker asked for further briefing on a
key constitutional question in the litigations brought
against telecommunications carriers for their involvement
in the NSA's warrantless wiretapping.
http://www.eff.org/deeplinks/2009/02/judge-seeks-further-briefing-constitutionality-tel

* Advisers Ask Government to Fix REAL ID, Border Searches
A committee of privacy advisers has recommended that the
government add vital privacy protections to two high
profile and controversial homeland security efforts.
http://www.eff.org/deeplinks/2009/02/privacy-advisers-tell-government-improve-real

* RFID PASScards Easily Cloned
A video released by Chris Paget shows just how easy it is
to clone RFID tags with this relatively simple technology.
http://www.eff.org/deeplinks/2009/02/rfid-passports-scanned-car

* Court Orders County to Release Geographic Mapping Data
A California appeals court issued a good decision in a case
raising unusual open government, homeland security, and
copyright questions.
http://www.eff.org/deeplinks/2009/02/california-court-orders-county-release-geographic-

* EFF to New Administration: Make Open Government a Reality
EFF has taken several actions that are likely to provide
early glimpses into the Obama Administration's approach to
open government issues.
http://www.eff.org/deeplinks/2009/02/eff-obama-administration-time-make-open-government

* Stimulus Roundup
Many have sought to make additions to the bill that raise
serious concerns for privacy and free speech online.
http://www.eff.org/deeplinks/2009/02/stimulus-roundup

* Do Authors Want to Sue You for Reading to Your Kids?
The Wall Street Journal has reported that the Authors Guild
is up in arms over a feature of the new Amazon Kindle 2
that reads e-books aloud using a text-to-speech algorithm.
http://www.eff.org/deeplinks/2009/02/does-authors-guild-want-sue-you-reading-aloud-your

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miniLinks

~ An Influx of Big Content Lawyers at DoJ: Cause for
Concern?
Julian Sanchez takes a look at the IP backgrounds of Obama
appointees to the Department of Justice.
http://arstechnica.com/tech-policy/news/2009/02/influx-of-big-content-lawyers-at-doj-cause-for-concern.ars

~ Judge to UMG: No, You Cannot Sue Veoh's Investors
The judge in Universal Music Group's case against Veoh
ruled that UMG could not include Veoh's investors as part
of the copyright infringement lawsuit.
http://www.techcrunch.com/2009/02/04/judge-tells-umg-no-you-cannot-sue-veohs-investors-for-copyright-infringement/

~ Warner Music Group Removes Warner Music Group Videos
Warner recording artist Emiliana Torrini had her videos
removed from YouTube -- by Warner.
http://www.boingboing.net/2009/02/08/warner-music-group-a.html

For more miniLinks:
http://www.eff.org/deeplinks/2009/02/minilinks-2009-02-12

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Announcements

* Come See EFF at SCaLE and eTech!

The 7th Annual Southern California Linux Expo will be
February 20-22, 2009, at the Los Angeles Airport Westin
Hotel. EFF will have a booth on the expo floor, which is
open on the 21st and 22nd. Stop by to say hello, and update
your membership! EFF will also be at the O'Reilly Emerging
Technologies Conference in San Diego, California. Please
visit our booth and grab some EFF swag during exhibit
hours. We look forward to seeing you!

For more information on SCaLE:
http://scale7x.socallinuxexpo.org/

For more information on eTech:
http://en.oreilly.com/et2009/public/content/home

* Got Any Airline Miles to Spare?

Wanna make a contribution to EFF that doesn't take any
money out of your pocket? Consider donating airline
tickets! EFF is trying to cut down on our travel expenses,
and we're looking for people with lots of miles who would
be willing to make reservations for EFF staffers with their
miles. For more information, or to make a contribution,
contact development@eff.org.

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Administrivia

EFFector is published by:
The Electronic Frontier Foundation
http://www.eff.org/about

Editor:
Sara Bassett, Membership Services Assistant
sara@eff.org

Membership & donation queries:
membership@eff.org

General EFF, legal, policy, or online resources queries:
information@eff.org

Back issues of EFFector are available at:
http://www.eff.org/effector/
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