Do you use my news? I’ll sue you
To the numerous diatribes that have already emerged due to similar circumstances, we must add the contrast between the Moreover and the Associated Press. The latter has reported Verisign, owner of Moreover since 2005, for having done use of their own content so dissimilar from the provisions of the “fair use” rule (consisting of an article present in Title 17, paragraph 107, of
the U.S. Copyright law).
The news has been circulating online for a few days, with tones of general perplexity : it is not clear how one can proceed with a complaint so immediately, without even attempting a minimum of negotiation solution. It comes natural to think about what happened between Google And France Press last April: the two entered into conflict as the second did not much like the use of their news on the Google News portal. The solution, though nothing specific has been revealed about the economic conditions, was found on the basis of a normal agreement table materialized in a financial transaction.
The story, according to what most of the sources on the net indicate, literally hinges on the now famous Copyright Law which allows limited reproduction of the contents under the aegis of “fair use”, but Srinadan Kasi, vice president and director of AP, says on CNNMoney: “Moreover, the activities are not identified in fair use because, among other things , they execute one mere copy of AP titles and offer no added value. Courts generally give parties an edge when copyrighted material is made into a new work or one new form of expression for example the parody “.
It is singular, ArsTechnica observes, that AP has detected the alleged irregularity of its own while he was bargaining with Moreover, the provision of a content management service for its customers.
ArsTechnica further emphasizes that AP, like many other similar companies, does not live off advertising on its sites and it does not derive any advantage from being linked (to having, that is, on the pages of others, a link that links to their sites ). The press agencies, which the Anglo-Saxons define, with a broader term, wire services, live by guarding jealously their product and making sure they use it first and exclusively newspapers, magazines, radio and TV: the risk, therefore, is that the users of the contents, instead of contracting an official use regularly paid fall back on the fastest aggregation services, which they cost nothing and refer with the difference of a few minutes .
From this point of view, AP’s position can be shared; although it is true that, even taking in every possible consideration the “fair use”, AP always makes available of the whole world this page, where the RSS feeds of your circuit are available, carefully explained on this other page, complete with suggestions on how to use the service.
All that remains is to follow the story, also in the light of all the previous similar ones, to understand more fully if behind a certain dose of legal aggression like that demonstrated by AP, there are no other interests that explain it better than the bare chronicle of the facts.