Wednesday, March 04, 2015

Judge Dredd vs Batman in the IP wars




Fans of these two Super Heroes will hopefully recall a very different attitude to law enforcement. On the one hand Judge Dredd followed the law and Batman sought justice. Both are subject to interpretation but perhaps the law is easier to be clear about than the more broad concepts of justice.

For once an area of the law in the Copyright field is clear. Simply providing a link to material will almost never amount to copying or transmitting that material. This was confirmed in the Svensson case.

Therefore in copyright terms a site that simply links to infringing content does not breach copyright.

From a Dredd perspective therefore many of the sites that are considered pirate are not in breach of copyright as they are simply linking to rather than originating material.

From a Batman perspective it is unjust that sites can provide a massive array of unapproved content and generate audience and revenue without paying a penny to the creators of that content.

The nature of the internet makes the current legal position farcical but supporters of the concept of the Rule of Law would appreciate that unless and until the law is changed much activity that is described as pirate is in fact legal and drawing the line is no easy matter.