Thursday, November 21, 2013

DMCA Takedown abuse leads Wordpress to join in two suits about fraudulent or bad-faith takedown notices

There are more “fires” today.  Arstechnica reports a case where a site called “Retraction Watch” saw some of its articles (regarding medical research) copied by a site in India so it could file a DMCA takedown on the Retraction articles, which have to do with cases or erroneous or falsified scientific reporting.  The article by John Timmer, as it had been publihsed Feb 5, 2013, is here
     
Retraction Watch today reported that it is filing a suit and is being joined by Automatic, owner of Wordpress, regarding a false or abusive DMCA claim, in a posting here
   
The Oliver Hotham writes about how he was “bullied” by “Straight Pride UK” with a DMCA takedown when he reproduced an email they sent to him, link here.

He even says that the group has made legal bully-like demands that they never write about them again.  Can something like this stand up?  The danger is that something like this could wind up in an out-of-court settlement in some other copyright or libel case.  There was a little incident in 2001 where I had to wonder about something like this.
   
Wordpress is also backing up Hotham in a suit, as reported by Corynne McSherry from Electronic Frontier Foundation, story here
   
These cases bear watching.

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