p2pnet.net News:- A famous non-profit Net historical archive, which stores snapshots of web sites, is being sued under Hollywood`s DMCA (Digital Millennium Copyright Act) and the Computer Fraud and Abuse Act.
Beyond its utility for Internet historians, the Web page database, searchable with a form called the Wayback Machine, is also routinely used by intellectual property lawyers to help learn, for example, when and how a trademark might have been historically used or violated, says the New York Times, going on:
That is what brought the Philadelphia law firm of Harding Earley Follmer & Frailey to the Wayback Machine two years ago. The firm was defending Health Advocate, a company in suburban Philadelphia that helps patients resolve health care and insurance disputes, against a trademark action brought by a similarly named competitor.
But when it was putting the case together, Earley Follmer used the Wayback Machine to unearth web pages, some dating to 1999, originally posted by Healthcare Advocates and last week, Healthcare Advocates sued both the Harding Earley firm and the Internet Archive, saying the access to its old Web pages, stored in the Internet Archive’s database, was unauthorized and illegal, says the story.
The lawsuit, filed in Federal District Court in Philadelphia, seeks unspecified damages for copyright infringement and violations
The suit contends that Harding Earley shouldn`t have been able to view the old Healthcare Advocates Web pages because shortly after filing its suit against Health Advocate, the company had placed a text file on its own servers designed to tell the Wayback Machine to block public access to the historical versions of the site, says the NYT.
Now the Internet Archive is accused of breach of contract and fiduciary duty, negligence and other charges for failing to honor the robots.txt file and allowing the archived pages to be viewed.
New York Times – Keeper of Expired Web Pages Is Sued Because Archive Was Used in Another Suit, July 13, 2005