Ask Dr. Copyright

copyright question Dear Doc:

What ever happened to “RightHaven” that company you called a “copyright troll” and that was suing bloggers for quoting from the Las Vegas newspaper?

Signed,

Just Curious, With Nothing Better to Do

Dear JC:

It turns out that RightHaven was beaten back by some of the defendants that it sued, with the help of the Electronic Frontier Foundation. In the end, the judge in the case penalized RightHaven because it did not even fully own some of the copyrights under which it brought suit.  RightHaven was ordered to pay certain defendants costs and fees amounting to $183,000.  To help pay that debt, some of the copyrights that it did own have been seized and even its domain name, RightHaven.com, was sold at auction – for $3,300.  RightHaven itself has filed for bankruptcy. Along the way, a federal judge ruled that even posting a complete newspaper story on a blog may, in some cases, be considered fair use by the blogger.

If there is a moral to this story, the “Doc” guesses that it may just be, “Those who live in glass houses should not throw stones.”

The “Doc”

 

– Lawrence A Husick, Esq.

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