Monday , June 17 2024

Sold Up the Digital River

Verizon runs out of options and has to reveal the names of four customers suspected of illegally uploading [article mistakenly says “downloading”] digital copies of songs to the RIAA:

    The nation’s largest telephone company was ordered to surrender the names to the Recording Industry Association of America by the U.S. Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia. Earlier in the week, the court rejected Verizon’s request for a stay of the decision until Sept. 16, when Verizon is to challenge the law used by the RIAA to get the names.

    Verizon has argued that the law — known as the Digital Millennium Copyright Act — is too broad and a violation of its customers’ privacy.

    The RIAA, which represents the music industry’s largest record companies, said yesterday that it has not yet decided what it will do with the names.

    “We are weighing our options,” said RIAA spokeswoman Amy Weiss

    Verizon says the law does not provide safeguards for the privacy of consumers. A complainant can identify an individual by tracing his or her Internet protocol address, which is unique to each user and can be gleaned from e-mails, Web site logs or a Web surfer’s entry into a chat room. Under the copyright act, a court clerk can issue a subpoena for an individual’s name, without a review by a judge. [Washington Post]

It is absolutely time for Congress to step in and rectify this mess.

About Eric Olsen

Career media professional and serial entrepreneur Eric Olsen flung himself into the paranormal world in 2012, creating the America's Most Haunted brand and co-authoring the award-winning America's Most Haunted book, published by Berkley/Penguin in Sept, 2014. Olsen is co-host of the nationally syndicated broadcast and Internet radio talk show After Hours AM; his entertaining and informative America's Most Haunted website and social media outlets are must-reads: Twitter@amhaunted,, Pinterest America's Most Haunted. Olsen is also guitarist/singer for popular and wildly eclectic Cleveland cover band The Props.

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