In a victory for small-time music copiers over the entertainment industry, a federal judge ruled Wednesday that copyright holders can't order one of their songs removed from the Web without first checking to see if the excerpt was so small and innocuous that it was legal...

A 1998 federal law authorized copyright holders to issue takedown orders whenever they see an unauthorized version of their work on the Internet without having to sue and prove a case of infringement. Some advocates of Internet users' rights - including the Electronic Frontier Foundation, which represented the individual user in this case - contend the procedure has been abused.

Thursday, August 21, 2008
San Francisco Chronicle