What is a Sound Recording? …cont’d Excess Copyright
On Thursday, May 7th, 2009 the Copyright Board will hold an oral hearing on the preliminary matter of whether the definition of “sound recording” in the Copyright Act excludes a sound recording embodied in a sound track of a cinematographic work, in the context of whether movie theatre owners and television broadcasters must pay a tariff to owners of rights in sound recordings. The Act says: “sound recording” means a recording, fixed in any material form, consisting of sounds, whether or not of a performance of a work, but excludes any soundtrack of a cinematographic work where it accompanies the cinematographic work;” While the meaning of this definition has seemed to be clear up until now, the NRCC has decided to try to assert a right to be paid for the use of sound recordings that are part of the soundtrack of films. This hearing should be interesting, considering the rather complex and lengthy arguments filed on both sides by some very experienced counsel. The word “absurd” seems to loom large in arguments on both sides of the fence.
Open source video codec Ogg Theora hot on the heels of H.264 Heise Online
MPEG-4 AVC (H.264), the efficient, open industry standard for video encoding, has made huge strides to become the industry leader in all areas it plays on mobiles and MP3 players, it’s used by HDTV and Blu-ray Discs, and cameras and HD camcorders record in it. H.264, currently the most efficient video compression algorithm, is also, since Adobe integrated the codec into its Flash Player, used for web videos and now Microsoft is also adding H.264 to Silverlight 3. Nevertheless, there is one important snag with H.264 from 2011, license fees will be required from sites streaming video using this technology. For this reason, the World Wide Web Consortium (W3C) and members of the Web Hypertext Application Technology Working Group (WhatWG) proposed the open source Ogg codecs Theora (video) and Vorbis (audio), developed by the Xiph Foundation, as the standard for the planned video and audio elements in the “W3C Editor’s Draft” for HTML 5. However, in the end concerns expressed by, among others, Nokia over “patent risks” for such “proprietary codecs” resulted in this passage being deleted from the draft. Nonetheless, the forthcoming Firefox 3.5 will support the Ogg codecs, as do experimental versions of Opera 9.6.
Windows 7 raises complaints from rivals: report Reuters
Microsoft Corp’s next version of Windows is stirring fresh complaints of anticompetitive behavior from rivals who say the new version of the operating system gives unfair advantage to Microsoft’s Internet Explorer browser, the Financial Times reported. “Our initial review suggests this is a blatant use of the Windows operating system to change the market dynamics of browser usage,” Mitchell Baker, chairperson of Mozilla, developer of open-source Firefox browser, told the paper. No-one at Microsoft could immediately be reached for comment.
Porn king reports police over crime gang sting The Local
Back in 1997, Milton, who has earned billions as head of the Private Media Group adult entertainment empire, was visited at his office by three men from the BrÃ¶draskapet motorcycle gang. The three men warned Milton of an existing threat against him and his family. The gang members then told Milton they could take care of the threat if Milton agreed to pay them 400,000 kronor ($50,000). The first 100,000 kronor was to be handed over at a McDonald`s restaurant the following day.
Google confirms FTC ‘discussion’ pending over Schmidt-Apple relationship CNEt News
Google confirmed that the Federal Trade Commission plans to hold discussions with the company over a possible conflict of interest due to CEO Eric Schmidt’s participation on both Google and Apple’s board of directors. In response to questions posed by reporters during a lunch meeting with Google executives–including Schmidt–Google vice president and general counsel Kent Walker confirmed that Google was aware of a “pending FTC discussion” into Schmidt’s board seats, which was reported earlier in the week by The New York Times. Google does not believe Schmidt’s role on Apple’s board presents a problem, and encourages company members to participate on boards, said David Drummond, Google’s chief legal officer and senior vice president for corporate development.
Mygener.im bug spreads on Facebook Los Angeles Times
Secure your digital surgical masks. Last week’s phishing bug that bit many Facebook users began to resurface Thursday morning. Facebook users have been receiving messages from friends that ask them to visit the Web site mygener.im. The site is marked as malicious in many browsers, so most curious wanderers will receive a warning when attempting to visit the link. For those daring enough to continue, the site redirects users through a series of Web domains, eventually landing on, at least for now, an address that doesn’t seem to point anywhere. Thursday’s incident appeared directly related to last week’s phishing outbreak in which some Facebook users were duped into giving their passwords to scammers, Facebook spokesman Barry Schnitt wrote in an e-mail.
The President`s Name Trips Up a Would-Be Voice of the News New York Times
The Amazon Kindle, an electronic reader, has been lavished with praise by hopeful newspaper and book executives who say they believe it has the potential to do for newspapers and books what the iPod did for music. But if the Kindle, which not only displays the news but also speaks it with a computerized voice, is ever to be the savior of print media, it needs to bone up on its pronunciation. In particular, the voice of the Kindle mispronounces two important words that show up often in the pages of newspapers: “Barack” (the device rhymes it with “black”) and “Obama” (sounds like “Alabama”).
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