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Full-Text Articles in Law

Public Performance Rights In The Digital Age: Fixing The Licensing Problem, G. S. Hans Dec 2012

Public Performance Rights In The Digital Age: Fixing The Licensing Problem, G. S. Hans

Michigan Law Review First Impressions

Recent technological advances have allowed consumers to reinvent the mixtape. Instead of being confined to two sides of an audiocassette, people can now create playlists that stretch for hours and days on their computers, tablets, mobile devices, and MP3 players. This, in turn, has affected how people consume and listen to music, both in isolation and in groups. As individuals and business owners in the United States use devices to store, organize, and listen to music, they inevitably run up against the boundaries of U.S. copyright law. In general, these laws affect businesses more often than private individuals, who ...


The Case Against Combating Bittorrent Piracy Through Mass John Doe Copyright Infringement Lawsuits, Sean B. Karunaratne Nov 2012

The Case Against Combating Bittorrent Piracy Through Mass John Doe Copyright Infringement Lawsuits, Sean B. Karunaratne

Michigan Law Review

Today, the most popular peer-to-peer file-sharing medium is the BitTorrent protocol. While BitTorrent itself is not illegal, many of its users unlawfully distribute copyrighted works. Some copyright holders enforce their rights by suing numerous infringing BitTorrent users in a single mass lawsuit. Because the copyright holder initially knows the putative defendants only by their IP addresses, it identifies the defendants anonymously in the complaint as John Does. The copyright holder then seeks a federal court's permission to engage in early discovery for the purpose of learning the identities behind the IP addresses. Once the plaintiff knows the identities of ...


Copyright And The Vagueness Doctrine, Bradley E. Abruzzi Feb 2012

Copyright And The Vagueness Doctrine, Bradley E. Abruzzi

University of Michigan Journal of Law Reform

The Constitution's void-for-vagueness doctrine is itself vaguely stated. The doctrine does little to describe at what point vague laws-other than those that are entirely standardless-become unconstitutionally vague. Rather than explore this territory, the Supreme Court has identified three collateral factors that affect its inclination to invalidate a law for vagueness: (1) whether the law burdens the exercise of constitutional rights, (2) whether the law is punitive in nature, and (3) whether the law overlays a defendant-protective scienter requirement. Measured against these factors, copyright law does not meet the vagueness doctrine's minimum requirement of fair notice to the public ...


Student Intellectual Property Issues On The Entrepreneurial Campus, Bryce C. Pilz Jan 2012

Student Intellectual Property Issues On The Entrepreneurial Campus, Bryce C. Pilz

Michigan Business & Entrepreneurial Law Review

This article examines issues that are more frequently arising for universities concerning intellectual property in student inventions. It seeks to identify the issue, explain the underlying law, identify actual and proposed solutions to these issues, and explain the legal ramifications of these potential solutions.


Argh, Matey! The Faux-Pas Of The Sopa (Stop Online Piracy Act), Anna S. Han Jan 2012

Argh, Matey! The Faux-Pas Of The Sopa (Stop Online Piracy Act), Anna S. Han

University of Michigan Journal of Law Reform Caveat

Earlier, I posted about a network neutrality case, Verizon v. FCC, which could have far-reaching consequences for the Internet industry. Another concerted attempt to regulate the Internet, disguised in the form of a piracy protection bill, recently came before the House Judiciary Committee and garnered widespread disapproval. Representative Lamar Smith (R-TX) and a bipartisan group of twelve co-sponsors introduced the “Stop Online Piracy Act” (“SOPA”) on October 26, 2011, which punishes websites that are accused of facilitating copyright infringement. Although touted by its supporters as a weapon against foreign sites that steal and sell American inventions, SOPA is problematic because ...


Fighting The First Sale Doctrine: Strategies For A Struggling Film Industry, Sage Vanden Heuvel Jan 2012

Fighting The First Sale Doctrine: Strategies For A Struggling Film Industry, Sage Vanden Heuvel

Michigan Telecommunications & Technology Law Review

The first sale doctrine, codified at 17 U.S.C. § 109, grants the owners of a copy of a copyrighted work the right to sell, rent, or lease that copy without permission from the copyright owner. This doctrine, first endorsed by the Supreme Court in Bobbs-Merrill Co. v. Straus, was established at a time when the owner of a good necessarily had to forego possession in order to sell or lease the item to another.[...] The changes in technology and industry over the past two decades threaten to upend this balance. In today's digital world, an owner of a ...