- DK - Dodos attack Sony BMG in Denmark, win landmark ruling +/-
(Ars Technica) One of the biggest Danish pop bands of the 80's has won a case against its record label that could remake the European digital music scene. Dodo & the Dodos charged that Sony BMG had no contractual permission to distribute its music over the Internet, and the Danish Eastern High Court agreed last week. Now, record labels could be forced to negotiate new contracts with every band who signed a deal in the pre-Internet era, and those bands could rake in much higher royalties.
- EU - Kids in Europe justify piracy: "Papa pirates, so I do, too" +/-
(Ars Technica) "Everybody's doing it!" That's one excuse provided by European kids as to why they pirate media or software from the Internet, according to new survey results from the European Commission. The qualitative survey consisted of 9-10 year olds and 12-14 year olds across all 27 of the European Union's member states (plus Norway and Iceland) and was meant to gauge how children in Europe use online technologies. And while most of them are aware that downloading things like music, movies, and video games is illegal, they're more than willing to justify it.
- EU - Kids justify illegal downloads, study finds +/-
(Reuters) Children in Europe are aware of the risks of illegal downloading but often rationalize their act by saying that everyone - including their parents--is doing it, according to a major European Commission survey. Other excuses included: the download is for personal and private purposes; the Web sites presumably remunerate the artists; claims of harm inflicted on artists lack credibility; and DVDs and CDs are simply too expensive.
- Facebook kicks Audio off Platform, bigger questions loom +/-
(Inside Facebook) Facebook has completely kicked the Audio application off the Facebook Platform, a first in Platform history for an application of this size. The reasons cited were IP violations. Audio was an application that let Facebook users upload MP3 files, share them with friends, and listen to them on the site. One of the fastest growing apps after launch, Audio had about 750,000 users before Facebook pulled out the rug.
- RU - Russia throws out net piracy case +/-
(BBC) A former owner of Russia's music website Allofmp3.com who sold cut-price downloads of Western music has been acquitted of copyright offences. A court in Moscow ruled that Denis Kvasov and his site had operated within the bounds of Russian law.
- Universal sells songs without DRM +/-
(BBC) Vivendi's Universal Music is to test the digital sale of songs from artists without the customary copy-protection technology. It will allow the sale of thousands of albums and tracks available in MP3-form without the protection, known as digital rights management (DRM). Most major recording studios insist music sellers use DRM technology to curb online piracy.
- US - Judge says Unix copyrights belong to Novell +/-
(New York Times) In a decision that may finally settle one of the most bitter legal battles surrounding software widely used in corporate data centers, a federal district court judge ruled that Novell, not the SCO Group, is the rightful owner of the copyrights covering the Unix operating system. Judge Kimball's decision in favor of Novell could almost entirely undermine SCO's 2003 lawsuit against IBM.
- US - Second Life sex toy creates copyright hotbed +/-
(vnunet.com) An entrepreneur in Second Life, maker of 'adult' items such as the SexGen bed, a piece of virtual furniture that allows Second Life users to simulate more than 150 sex acts, has filed a copyright infringement lawsuit against a fellow virtual resident. lthough the concept of 'virtual' property has been bantered around by lawyers in recent years, this will be the first time that such a copyright case will be taken to a US court.
- Facebook users pretty willing to add strangers as 'friends' +/-
(News.com) IT security firm Sophos has released the results of its Facebook ID Probe, a test to see just how many users of the site are willing to divulge highly personal information to potential identity thieves. The results, to say the least, show that more than a few Facebook members might not be taking their privacy seriously enough. Sophos created a fake Facebook profile, and randomly requested 200 members to be friends with 'Freddi.' Out of those 200, 87 accepted the friend request and 82 of those gave 'Freddi' access to "personal information" such as e-mail addresses, dates of birth, addresses and phone numbers, and school or work data.
- Second Monster hack affects millions +/-
(vnunet.com) Monster.com has admitted that the number of job seekers on its website who had their personal data stolen is greater than the 1.3 million originally reported. Monster.com kept the original attack secret for five days before alerting users to the problem. The company's database holds around 73 million CVs. Iannuzzi claimed that only a few hundred had cancelled their accounts, along with a "handful" of employers.
- UK - Honesty the best online policy +/-
(BBC News) Columnist Bill Thompson says firms should tell customers when their computer security has been breached. UK organisations have no legal duty to tell if personal data has been compromised. The situation may change, if the House of Lords Select Committee on Science and Technology has its way. They have spent the last year looking at internet security and how it affects us all and they published their final report, called Personal Internet Security.
- UK - Press Complaints Commission raps paper over online video +/-
(OUT-LAW News) The Press Complaints Commission (PCC) has issued its first ever ruling on video content published online by a newspaper. It said that the Hamilton Advertiser breached school pupils' rights to privacy with a video of an unruly classroom.
- AU - Howard on internet porn crusade +/-
(Australin IT) John Howard is going to spend $189 million on "cleaning up the internet" for Australian families, blocking pornography, upgrading the search for chat-room sex predators and cutting off terror sites. Every Australian family will be provided with a free internet filter and the federal Government will enter an unprecedented partnership with service providers to filter pornography at the source. Communications and Australian Federal Police resources will be boosted immediately to expand checks on internet chat rooms to detect child predators, and privacy laws masking sex offenders on the net will be altered. see also AU - Student cracks Government's $84m porn filter
- AU - Protecting Australian Families Online +/-
(DCITA) Senator the Hon Helen Coonan, Minister for Communications, Information Technology and the Arts, Address to Australian Personal Computer Awards Night, Sydney, Wednesday 21 March 2007
- EU - MEPs 'want EU sex offender list' +/-
(BBC) Members of the European Parliament overwhelmingly want to see an EU-wide register of sex offenders established, a survey suggests. A poll commissioned by the campaign to find missing Madeleine McCann found that 97% of MEPs backed the measure. Pollsters contacted 105 MEPs they judged to be representative of all the major EU member states and political groups in the European Parliament. As well as nearly all MEPs contacted agreeing with the creation of an EU-wide sex offenders register, the survey found that 95% wanted police to treat serious crimes involving children identically across Europe. Almost nine out of 10 MEPs who were canvassed supported introducing a common EU child abduction policy.
- US - Call For Better Age-Verification Methods +/-
(BetaNews) Attorneys General across the country banded together, calling on social networking sites to strengthen parental controls to keep minors from accessing questionable material on their sites. The efforts are being headed by Connecticut Attorney General Richard Blumenthal, who worked previously to get MySpace to disclose the identities of sex offenders on its Web site, and North Carolina Attorney General Roy Cooper. While both are working to have the companies voluntarily change their policies, they are also pushing for actual laws.
- Half of employers restrict Facebook +/-
(News.com) Half of businesses are restricting employees' access to social-networking site Facebook, due to concerns about productivity and security. According to research by security company Sophos, 43 percent of workers polled said their employer blocks Facebook access completely. A further 7 percent said access is restricted depending on whether it's required for a particular job. The issue of security was also raised by the Sophos research. In a separate poll by the company, 66 percent of workers said they are concerned about colleagues sharing information on Facebook.
- Online Publishers Association - Internet Activity Index +/-
(OPA) The Internet Activity Index (IAI) provides a new way of looking at consumer engagement online, dividing Internet usage into four distinct activities: content, communications, commerce and search. The IAI is derived from a categorization of Web properties accounting for more than 90%, on average, of active Web users and approximately 55% of total usage time (excludes .gov and .edu Web sites, as well as pornographic domains).
- Parents shaky about kids' safety online +/-
(CNET News.com) by Stefanie Olsen. The majority of parents say they've taken some action to ensure their child's safety online, but at least some will admit they're clueless about how to protect kids. According to a new study from research firm Harris Interactive, roughly a third of parents said they don't feel confident about teaching kids how to use the Internet safely and responsibly. Nevertheless, as many as 94 percent of parents have turned to Web content filters, monitoring software or advice from an adult friend to help shield their kids from harm on the Net.
- UK - Bebo edges ahead of MySpace +/-
(vnunet.com) Teen social site Bebo has overtaken MySpace as the most visited social networking site among UK surfers, according to web monitoring firm comScore. Bebo attracted 10.6 million unique visitors, an increase of 63 per cent over the start of the year. MySpace enjoyed a 25 per cent increase in traffic, to reach 10.1 million. The fastest growing social networking site was Facebook, which has grown 366 per cent to attract an audience of 7.6 million.
- UK - Britain enjoying 'digital boom' +/-
(BBC) The net, mobile phones and MP3 players are revolutionising how Britons spend their time, says Ofcom's annual report. It reveals that older media such as TV, radio and even DVDs are being abandoned in favour of more modern technology. Surprisingly, it also shows that women, in some age groups, are the dominant web users and older web users spend more time online than any group. Among children it showed that web and mobile phone use is growing at the expense of video games. See also Mobile phones 'eroding landlines' and More than half of UK homes have broadband (vnunet.com).