Tag Archives: intellectual property

Yes, hate speech is free speech

Source: National Review
by Rich Lowry

“With the Left feverishly attempting to squash unwelcome speech on college campuses, with the president of the United States musing about tightening libel laws, with prominent liberals asserting that so-called hate speech is not protected by the First Amendment, free speech in America at least has one reliable friend — the Supreme Court of the United States. In a firm 8-0 decision, the court slapped down the Patent and Trademark Office for denying a band federal trademark registration for the name ‘The Slants,’ a derogatory term for Asian-Americans. The case involves a very small corner of federal law, but implicates the broader logic of political correctness, which is that speech should be silenced for the greater good if there is a chance that someone, somewhere might be offended by it.” (06/20/17)

http://www.nationalreview.com/article/448776/slants-supreme-court-matal-v-tam-decision-protects-free-speech

Copyright law shouldn’t pick winners

Source: Electronic Frontier Foundation
by Elliot Harmon

“When looking at a proposed policy regulating Internet businesses, here’s a good question to ask yourself: would this bar new companies from competing with the current big players? Google will probably be fine, but what about the next Google? In the past few years, some large movie studios and record labels have been promoting a proposal that would effectively require user-generated media platforms to use copyright bots similar to YouTube’s infamous Content ID system. Today’s YouTube will have no trouble complying, but imagine if such requirements had been in place when YouTube was a three-person company. If copyright bots become the law, the barrier to entry for new social media companies will get a lot higher.” [editor’s note: Copyright law shouldn’t exist – TLK] (06/20/19)

https://www.eff.org/deeplinks/2017/06/copyright-law-shouldnt-pick-winners

SCOTUS strikes down rule against disparaging trademarks

Source: Hollywood Reporter

“Those of fiendish or mischievous mind will have an easier time registering trademarks after the Supreme Court on Monday decided to reject as unconstitutional a rule against disparaging ones. The high court’s decision, authored by justice Samuel Alito, holds that a Lanham Act provision against such offensive trademarks is facially invalid under the First Amendment. … The free speech victory goes to Simon Tam, the Asian-American frontman for The Slants who attempted to register his rock band’s name. He says he picked his band’s moniker in an effort to reclaim a stereotype. After trademark examiners refused Tam’s application, Tam brought a lawsuit, and in December 2015, he prevailed at the United States Court of Appeals for the Federal Circuit. The Supreme Court has now affirmed the lower appeals court’s opinion, which is also potentially welcome news for the NFL’s Washington Redskins, whose own marks were canceled for being disparaging to Native Americans.” (06/19/17)

http://www.hollywoodreporter.com/thr-esq/supreme-court-strikes-down-rule-disparaging-trademarks-1006208

A conversation between voluntaryists: What’s with IP?

Source: Everything Voluntary
by Kenny Kelly & Kilgore Forelle

“Kilgore and I have had another discussion. This time about intellectual property (IP) laws and their role, if any, in a free society. This topic is not as much of a debate as the last, but still worth having.” (06/17/17)

http://everything-voluntary.com/covnersation-between-voluntaryists-whats-with-ip

Segregated Witness and the possibility of patent infringement

Source: Bitcoin.com
by Jamie Redman

“During the late evening of June 1, Bitcoin.com received an email from an anonymous source who has been researching possible patent infringements associated with the Segregated Witness (Segwit) protocol. According to the researcher, Segwit may be at risk violating two specific patents filed with the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO).” (06/02/17)

https://news.bitcoin.com/segregated-witness-patent-infringement/

Intellectual property dealt a hard blow

Source: A Geek With Guns
by Christopher Burg

“I pull no punches when it comes to my views on intellectual property. While I want intellectual property abolished entirely, I do admit that some uses are more egregious than others. One of the most egregious uses is restricting what consumers can do with a product after they’ve purchased it. John Deere made headlines by using intellectual property laws to prevent farmers from repairing their own equipment. Printer manufacturers have also been using intellectual property laws to restrict consumer access to third-party ink. The Supreme Court’s most recent ruling dealt a hard blow to those printer manufacturers …” (05/31/17)

https://blog.christopherburg.com/2017/05/31/intellectual-property-dealt-a-hard-blow/

No evidence that “stronger” patents will mean more innovation

Source: Electronic Frontier Foundation
by Vera Ranieri

“Right now, the patent lobby — in the form of the Intellectual Property Owners Association and the American Intellectual Property Law Association — is demanding ‘stronger’ patent laws. They want to undo Alice v. CLS Bank and return us to a world where ‘do it on a computer’ ideas are eligible for a patent. This would help lawyers file more patent applications and patent litigation. But there’s no evidence that such laws would benefit the public or innovation at all.” (05/24/17)

https://www.eff.org/deeplinks/2017/05/no-evidence-stronger-patents-will-mean-more-innovation

SCOTUS: Patent trolls’ loss is a win for honest commerce

Source: Garrison Center
by Thomas L Knapp

“On May 22, the US Supreme Court ruled unanimously — and correctly — on a fairly obscure case that nonetheless has huge implications in an area where millions or even billions of dollars are frequently at stake. In TC Heartland v. Kraft Foods Group Brands, the Court came down against the practice of ‘forum shopping’ in patent disputes. Hopefully this will reduce the incidence of ‘patent trolling.'” (05/23/17)

http://thegarrisoncenter.org/archives/10578

US Supreme Court limits “venue shopping” for patent cases

Source: The Hill

“A Supreme Court decision on Monday will limit the controversial practice of ‘venue shopping’ — where plaintiffs pick court locations that they believe will be favorable to the cases they’re arguing. The court reversed a U.S. Court of Appeals for the Federal Circuit decision from last year that had been used as justification for bringing cases to venues wherever the companies involved happened to conduct business. Companies will now be required to bring lawsuits to where the targeted company is incorporated.” (05/22/17)

http://thehill.com/regulation/court-battles/334548-supreme-court-limits-venue-shopping-for-patent-cases

Secret new European copyright proposal spells disaster for free culture

Source: Electronic Frontier Foundation
by Jeremy Malcolm

“EFF has learned about a new proposal for European law that takes aim at online streaming services, but which will strike a serious blow to creators and their fans. The proposal, which would effectively ban online streaming services from hosting works under free licenses, could spell an end to services like the Luxembourg-based Jamendo that offers access to free music online, and raise new barriers to offering freely-licensed works on other streaming platforms. This is all part of Europe’s proposed new Digital Single Market Directive, which is presently doing the rounds of the three European institutions (the European Commission, European Parliament, and Council of the European Union) that will have to reach agreement on its final text.” (05/15/17)

https://www.eff.org/deeplinks/2017/05/secret-new-european-copyright-proposal-spells-disaster-free-culture