|Brad & Carrie|
And now for a couple of of non-US updates:
In Germany the chief executive of a software company has been found liable for copyright infringement after software developed by the company was amended in an open source environment to allow copyright-protected material to be accessed unlawfully. The Register reports that Appwork created "JDownloader2", a download management tool, but allowed any external developers access to the underlying code to test and upgrade the software. A beta-version of the software was adapted in an open source environment which could be used to circumvent an existing encryption tool that prevents the downloading of copyrighted material, and this tool was subsequently made available for download and use commercially. A regional court in Hamburg said it was an infringement of German copyright laws to circumvent the technological protection measure. It ruled that the chief executive of Appwork was liable for that infringement after finding that the company had opened the possibility for open source integration, allowed the infringing version to be labelled as Appwork's own product, and failed to provide any restrictions against the downloading of such unofficial, infringing versions of its software.
TPP Postponed - but maybe soon! The ministers and heads of delegation for the somewhat controversial Trans-Pacific Partnership countries have released the following statement:
"We, the Ministers and Heads of Delegation for Australia, Brunei Darussalam, Canada, Chile, Japan, Malaysia, Mexico, New Zealand, Peru, Singapore, the United States, and Vietnam, have just completed a four-day Ministerial meeting in Singapore where we have made substantial progress toward completing the Trans-Pacific Partnership agreement.
Over the course of this meeting, we identified potential “landing zones” for the majority of key outstanding issues in the text. We will continue to work with flexibility to finalize these text issues as well as market access issues.
For all TPP countries, an ambitious, comprehensive and high-standard agreement that achieves the goals established in Honolulu in 2011 is critical for creating jobs and promoting growth, providing opportunity for our citizens and contributing to regional integration and the strengthening of the multilateral trading system.
Therefore, we have decided to continue our intensive work in the coming weeks toward such an agreement. We will also further our consultations with stakeholders and engage in our respective political processes.
Following additional work by negotiators, we intend to meet again next month."
Finally, but importantly, the German state of Bavaria has said that it will seek to block any publication of Adolf Hitler's Mein Kampf when the copyright expires in 2015 - 70 years after Hitler's death. The state owns the copyright in Mein Kampf, The move represents a change of tactics - Bavaria had previously intimated that it would allow publication with "critical commentary". The Bavarian governor's chief of staff, Christine Haderthauer, said Hitler's anti-Semitic memoir amounts to incitement and the government will file a criminal complaint if anyone tries to publish the book in the future.
Eleonora's blog from January 2012 on British publisher Alberta's Peter McGee plans to sell excerpts from Hitler's Mein Kampf in Germany can be found here http://the1709blog.blogspot.co.uk/2012/01/copyright-ban-over-hitlers-mein-kampf.html