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Category Archives: Copyright

Proposal to install spyware in university libraries to protect copyrights shocks academics

Coda Story – “A recent proposal recommending the deployment of surveillance software in order to monitor those accessing academic material has drawn fire from digital rights advocates and scientists. The plan was outlined on October 22 during a virtual webinar hosted by a consortium of the world’s leading publishers of scientific journals, featuring security experts discussing the threats posed by cyber-criminals and digital piracy to academic research. One speaker proposed a novel tactic publishers could take to protect their intellectual property rights against data theft: introducing spyware into the proxy servers academic libraries use to allow access to their online services, such as publishers’ databases. The speaker, Corey Roach, a security officer at the University of Utah, described a plug-in that could collect “biometric data, which can be things like how quick did they type, how do they move their mouse,” in order to distinguish and identify individual users, who are otherwise anonymized by university proxy servers. “We have a lot more than just their username and password,” Roach said in the webinar. “It might be information about them as a student or an employee. We get the customer IP address of where they’re coming from and the URLs for the material they’ve requested.”

To incentivize libraries to install the software, Roach suggested offering them discounts on publisher databases in exchange. The webinar was hosted by a new group called the Scholarly Networks Security Initiative (SNSI), the joint creation of Elsevier, Springer Nature, and other top academic publishers who banded together in February with the stated mandate of protecting higher education from cybercriminals and websites like Sci-Hub, a “shadow library” which illegally hosts and enables free access to copies of millions of research papers normally hidden behind publisher paywalls…”

How Controlled Digital Lending Makes an Entire College Library Available to Everyone Everywhere

Medium: “…When readers need access to a book that is essentially “locked up” in print, help is starting to be on the way through the concept of Controlled Digital Lending. This is an approach to library curation that allows print books to be digitally loaned in an environment that restricted people’s abilities to redistribute or… Continue Reading

Cyberlaw Clinic and EFF publish Guide to Legal Risks of Security Research

Cyberlaw Clinic: “We are excited to announce the release of A Researcher’s Guide to Some Legal Risks of Security Research (pdf), a report authored by Sunoo Park and Kendra Albert, and co-published by the Cyberlaw Clinic and the Electronic Frontier Foundation (EFF). Just last month, over 75 prominent security researchers signed a letter urging the… Continue Reading

Copyright in Code: Supreme Court Hears Landmark Software Case in Google v. Oracle

CRS Legal Sidebar via LC – Copyright in Code: Supreme Court Hears Landmark Software Case in Google v. Oracle, October 21, 2020: “In what observers have hailed as the “copyright case of the century,” an eight-member Supreme Court heard arguments on October 7, 2020 ,in Google LLC v. Oracle America Inc., a long-running intellectual-property dispute… Continue Reading

Internet Archive Open Library lawsuit moves forward; arguments set for November 2021

Via LLRX – Internet Archive Open Library lawsuit moves forward; arguments set for November 2021 – Chris Meadows discusses the ongoing case by four publishers, Hachette Book Group, HarperCollins Publishers, John Wiley & Sons and Penguin Random House, against the Internet Archives Open Library respective to the scanning, public display, and distribution of entire literary… Continue Reading

Publishers Are Taking the Internet to Court In a lawsuit against the Internet Archive

The Nation – the largest corporations in publishing want to change what it means to own a book. “…The Internet Archive is far more than the Open Library; it’s a nonprofit institution that has become a cornerstone of archival activity throughout the world. Brewster Kahle is an Internet pioneer who was writing about the importance… Continue Reading

YouTube Audio

“Enjoy royalty-free Sound Effects from the YouTube Audio Library. The YouTube Audio Library is a collection of music tracks that are freely available for YouTube creators to download and feature as background music in their videos. These high-quality 320kbps tracks are available royalty-free. Using them will not result in a claim on your video.” Continue Reading

Libraries lend books, and must continue to lend books

Internet Archive responds to publishers’ lawsuit: “Yesterday, the Internet Archive filed our response to the lawsuit brought by four commercial publishers to end the practice of Controlled Digital Lending (CDL), the digital equivalent of traditional library lending. CDL is a respectful and secure way to bring the breadth of our library collections to digital learners.… Continue Reading

Internet Archive to Publishers: Drop ‘Needless’ Copyright Lawsuit and Work with Us

Publishers Weekly: “During a 30-minute Zoom press conference on July 22, Internet Archive founder Brewster Kahle urged the four major publishers suing over the organization’s book scanning efforts to consider settling the dispute in the boardroom rather than the courtroom. “I call on the executives of Hachette, HarperCollins, Wiley, and Penguin Random House to come… Continue Reading

Open-access Plan S to allow publishing in any journal

Nature – “Funding agencies behind the radical open-access (OA) initiative Plan S have announced a policy that could make it possible for researchers to bypass journals’ restrictions on open publishing. The change could allow scientists affected by Plan S to publish in any journal they want — even in subscription titles, such as Science, that… Continue Reading

Experts respond to big publishers’ attacks on libraries and digital lending

San Francisco, CALIFORNIA — “Overnight, millions of people all over the world lost access to millions of physical books when libraries and schools closed to stop the spread of COVID-19. The nonprofit Internet Archive (IA) is now being sued by four big publishers for actions IA took to help communities during the pandemic and establish… Continue Reading