DMCA: It's not just for software pirates and movie traders anymore.
September 4, 2001 3:21 AM   Subscribe

DMCA: It's not just for software pirates and movie traders anymore. [salon link, sorry] Don't like what a web site is saying about your company and its investors? Cry copyright wolf and the site goes down, no questions asked.
posted by darukaru (10 comments total)
isn't this a repost, or did i read it somewhere else. Anyhow, i wouldn't just close their site, i would start lining the protesters up and shooting them. They have been illegally harassing this company for a long time, including physically attacking unarmed female employees.

Huntingdom Life Science works within the law. If they have a problem with that, go and take it up with the government. That is the right and correct way of dealing with things, not mob rule.
posted by Atom Heart Mother at 3:35 AM on September 4, 2001

What I didn't get from that article was how specifically the protest group was violating Huntingdon's copyright - simply by using Huntingdon's name? What about the activities of the protest group is the DCMA prohibiting?
posted by m.polo at 4:25 AM on September 4, 2001

'right and correct' (?)

less of the tautologies matey
posted by the cuban at 4:27 AM on September 4, 2001

I wonder, then, if it's possible for me to cry copyright violation against, say, CNN, and bring their site down?

Or any search engine that may have indexed my site.

Or any weblog (hey! it's a weblog! i've got copyright for that idea!).

posted by Neale at 4:37 AM on September 4, 2001

Neale, you can't copyright an idea. Sorry.
posted by tranquileye at 4:58 AM on September 4, 2001

Tranquileye, you can patent it, however. No matter how inane it may be.
posted by FullFrontalNerdity at 5:42 AM on September 4, 2001

The likely truth behind this is HLS threatened to hold the ISP responsible for aiding this group in publishing deflamatory lies. This group is reknowned for being extremist lunatics that use illegal and violent methods to get their point across. Trust Salon to publish an article without proper clarification or balance.
posted by Atom Heart Mother at 6:14 AM on September 4, 2001

To me the interesting thing here is that the DMCA is being applied so far outside the field it was apparently designed for. HLS doesn't have some XXIst century information good that they're trying to protect; no e-books or MP3s or high-tech databases involved as far as I can tell. They've just found a way to apply a small side-effect of the DMCA to silence the speech of particular critics.

[RICO laws have been stretched in similar ways in the past; see for instance 1998 congressional hearings on "Application of the RICO Law to Nonviolent Advocacy Groups".]

Whether or not those critics have used more objectionable tactics in the past is IMHO irrelevant in this case. Assuming the article is accurate, in this particular case HLS is clearly using the DMCA to squelch speech that ought to be protected. That seems obviously a bad thing, and "take it up with the government" is exactly what we should do: get the stupid law fixed or, better, repealed altogether.
posted by davidchess at 6:14 AM on September 4, 2001

It is also possible that they were using the site to distribute stolen documents belonging to HLS. That may be where the DMCA comes in.
posted by Atom Heart Mother at 6:17 AM on September 4, 2001

Geez man, do you work for HLS or something? You seem a particularly ardent defender of them/critic of SHAC... do you have a dog in this fight or what? While HLS may be within the law in what they're doing, that doesn't mean they should be using DMCA to be free of any criticism or protest.
posted by hincandenza at 2:03 PM on September 4, 2001

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