Library workers at Western University’s Graduate Resource Centre in London, Ontario, had a workshop from Alison Macrina, the library organiser whose Library Freedom Project won a battle with the US DHS over a library in New Hampshire that was offering a Tor exit node as part of a global network that delivers privacy, censorship resistance, and anonymity to all comers. Western’s librarians were so taken by Macrina’s presentation that they’ve turned on Canada’s first library-based Tor node. There is no clear law in Canada about libraries and Tor, and Macrina and the Western library folks say they’re spoiling for a fight. READ: First-ever Tor node in a Canadian library | Boing Boing
The letter was signed by 600 [scientists and their supporters] and sent Tuesday to the publisher of Science and to BuzzFeed News. It denounces the elite publisher for sexist columns, an offensive cover photo about trans people, and a snarky tweet from an editor who has since resigned. READ MORE: Read This Letter From Scientists Accusing Top Publisher Of Sexism | BuzzFeed News.
A culture of hate and suspicion has descended on the games industry, and at the centre of the vortex is a familiar foe: women. Ask Anita Sarkeesian and Zoe Quinn.
Scary. As librarians we have a responsibility to uphold the right to intellectual freedom. For situations such as this, there has to be checks and balances that hold criminal behaviour, such as harassment and death threats, accountable. Brings up all sorts of questions about social media and freedom of speech, anonymity, censorship, privacy and trolling.
Eight years after a group of authors and publishers sued Google for scanning more than 20 million library books without the permission of rights holders, a federal judge has ruled that the web giant’s sweeping book project stayed within the bounds of U.S. copyright law.
On Thursday morning, U.S. Circuit Judge Denny Chin dismissed a lawsuit from the Author Guild, ruling that Google’s book scans constituted fair use under the law. Though Google scanned those 20 million books in full and built a web service, Google Books, that lets anyone search the digital texts, users can only view “snippets” of a book if the right holder hasn’t given approval.
“In my view, Google Books provides significant public benefits,” the ruling reads. “It advances the progress of the arts and sciences, while maintaining respectful consideration for the rights of authors and other creative individuals, and without adversely impacting the rights of copyright holders.”
In a statement sent to WIRED, a Google spokesperson said the company was “absolutely delighted” with the ruling. “As we have long said, Google Books is in compliance with copyright law and acts like a card catalog for the digital age giving users the ability to find books to buy or borrow.”
Michael Boni, a partner with Boni & Zack, the law firm representing the Authors Guild, did not immediately respond to a phone message seeking comment. Nor did the Author’s Guild. But the Guild has told other news outlets it will appeal the decision.
“We disagree with and are disappointed by the court’s decision today. This case presents a fundamental challenge to copyright that merits review by a higher court,” reads a statement sent to GigaOm. “Google made unauthorized digital editions of nearly all of the world’s valuable copyright-protected literature and profits from displaying those works. In our view, such mass digitization and exploitation far exceeds the bounds of the fair use defense.”
The ruling comes two years after Judge Chin rejected a $125 million settlement between Google, the Author’s Guild, and the Association of American Publishers, which was also part of the original lawsuit against the web giant. After complaints over the settlement from outside organizations such as the Internet Archive and Google rivals such as Microsoft, Chin ruled the deal would give Google a de facto monopoly over so-called “orphan books,” scanned texts whose rights holders had not come forward to claim their share of the revenues Google would make from its book scanning endeavor.
A year after this ruling, the publishers agreed to another settlement with Google, and this one was not subject to approval from the court. But Chin allowed the case to continue as a class action, but an appeals court reversed this decision and told Chin to rule on the copyright issue.
Though Google limits how much book text you can view online — and though it doesn’t display ads on pages describing books it does not have rights to, the company, as the court explained, can still use its service to draw people to its websites and make money in other ways. But this commercial gain doesn’t necessarily mean copy infringement. Google Books, the judge ruled, doesn’t “negatively impact the market for books.”
On the contrary, Chin said, Google Books feeds the market for books. “A reasonable factfinder could only find that Google Books enhances the sales of books to the benefit of copyright holders,” the ruling reads. “Google Books provides a way for authors’ works to become noticed, much like traditional in-store book displays.”
Decision in French court comes after former head of Formula One said that showing images breaches his privacy.
The important consideration in this story is the following snip:
The decision is a setback to Google as it tries to defend a global stance that the search engine is merely a platform that delivers links to content and it should not be responsible for policing them.
Although Google can delete images on its website, it cannot prevent others reposting them, resulting in a constant game of catch-up.
In a statement, Google said the court’s request would require it to build a new software filter to continuously catch new versions of the posted images and remove them.
“This is a troubling ruling with serious consequences for free expression and we will appeal it,” said Google’s associate general counsel Daphne Keller in a statement.
As Web companies and government agencies analyze ever more information about our lives, it’s tempting to respond by passing new privacy laws or creating mechanisms that pay us for our data. Instead, we need a civic solution, because democracy is at risk.
Snip: “When all citizens demand their rights but are unaware of their responsibilities, the political questions that have defined democratic life over centuries—How should we live together? What is in the public interest, and how do I balance my own interest with it?—are subsumed into legal, economic, or administrative domains. “The political” and “the public” no longer register as domains at all; laws, markets, and technologies displace debate and contestation as preferred, less messy solutions.
But a democracy without engaged citizens doesn’t sound much like a democracy—and might not survive as one.”
A lengthy but thought provoking read on the right to privacy and democracy. Read: Evgeny Morozov on Why Our Privacy Problem is a Democracy Problem in Disguise | MIT Technology Review.
After six weeks of public discussions, document updates and changes, as well as incorporating input from digital rights experts, Mashable is pleased to unveil its first-ever Digital Bill of Rights, made for the Internet, by the Internet.
On July 30, ALA President Barbara Stripling unveiled the “Declaration for the Right to Libraries” during a signing ceremony at Nashville (Tenn.) Public Library. The Declaration is the cornerstone document of Stripling’s presidential initiative, “Libraries Change Lives,” which is designed to build the public will and sustain support for America’s right to libraries of all types—academic, special, school, and public. Stripling’s initiative will focus on transformative library practices in literacy, innovation, and community engagement.
For the past few weeks, Mashable has been crowdsourcing a Digital Bill of Rights to highlight the digital freedoms and protections our readers feel each user should be guaranteed as a citizen of the Internet.
After hundreds of comments and contributions on the Google Doc and through social media, a Digital Bill of Rights by the Internet, for the Internet, has been created. The document, though, is a work in progress as more users from across the world continue to include their thoughts and additions to it.
“The City of New York and Brookfield Properties has agreed to pay more than $233,000 to settle a lawsuit brought by Occupy Wall Street over the destruction of the People’s Library during the eviction of Zuccotti Park by the New York Police Department last fall. During the raid to clear the park in the early morning hours of November 15th 2011, the majority of the collection of more than 4,000 books donated by the public and organized by the Library Working Group was destroyed or damaged, an act roundly condemned by the American Library Association, as did the New York Civil Liberties Union and the National Lawyers Guild.” via City of New York settles with Occupy over destruction of the People’s Library » MobyLives.