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Communications Law

2005

Boston College Law School Faculty Papers

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Sony, Tort Doctrines, And The Puzzle Of Peer-To-Peer, Alfred C. Yen Feb 2005

Sony, Tort Doctrines, And The Puzzle Of Peer-To-Peer, Alfred C. Yen

Boston College Law School Faculty Papers

This Article analyzes and reconstructs the law of third party copyright liability as it applies to providers of peer-to-peer technology. By doing so, the Article accomplishes three things. First, it identifies doctrinal tension between broad third party copyright liability endorsed by lower courts and the Supreme Court’s skepticism of such liability as expressed in Sony Corporation of America v. Universal City Studios. Second, it describes how existing interpretations of the law fail to direct judicial attention to important considerations that ought to influence the third party copyright liability of peer-to-peer providers. Third, it uses concepts borrowed from common law ...