A group of entertainment companies have asked a federal appeals court to overturn a landmark court decision that short-circuited their efforts to sue two computer file-sharing software distributors for the illegal online swapping of songs and movies by their users. \nIn a sealed brief submitted late Monday to the 9th US Circuit Court of Appeals, the companies argued that federal Judge Stephen Wilson departed from well-established copyright law when he ruled in April that Grokster Ltd and StreamCast Networks Inc could not be held liable for their users' copyright violations. \nGrokster distributes file-sharing software by that name, and StreamCast distributes Morpheus. The entertainment companies sued StreamCast and Grokster in October 2001. \n"The District Court decision sharply departed from the law of the 9th Circuit and dramatically redrew the law of secondary infringement to set near impossible standards for liability in an online environment," the companies said in a brief by the Motion Picture Association of America and the Recording Industry Association of America. \nOn Tuesday, the groups made excerpts of the brief public. \nWhile Wilson did acknowledge Grokster and StreamCast might have intentionally structured their businesses to avoid liability while still profiting from the illicit use of their software, he concluded there was no evidence the companies could supervise and control the use of their services. \n"This case ... is about the conduct of businesses that intentionally misuse commonly available Internet peer-to-peer technology to profit from copyrights they do not own for works they did not create," the brief said. \nThe entertainment companies also argued that Wilson's decision "makes a mockery of copyright law" because it allows someone to form a company that profits off copyright infringement without any consequences. \n"These are businesses that were built for the exclusive reason of illegally exchanging copyrighted works and they make money hand over fist from it," RIAA President Cary Sherman said. "The Court of Appeals should hold them accountable." \nMichael Weiss, CEO of StreamCast Networks, said the main issue is whether file-sharing developers should be held liable for providing a product that has many useful applications simply because some people misuse it. \n"We expect to prevail and if we do not, we will take this to the Supreme Court if we must," Weiss said. \nWayne Rosso, Grokster's president, expressed confidence that Wilson's ruling would be upheld. \n"We clearly have the law on our side, something the plaintiffs obviously have a difficult time accepting," Rosso said. \nThe major recording companies and movie studios say the illegal swapping of their copyright works threatens their industries and hurts their employees. Both have engaged in public education campaigns and copyright lawsuits to stem piracy, particularly over the Internet.
SECRET OUT: Minister of Health and Welfare Chen Shih-chung yesterday accidentally revealed that the infections occurred at the ministry’s Taoyuan General Hospital The Central Epidemic Command Center (CECC) yesterday reported the fifth COVID-19 case in a cluster infection at a Taoyuan hospital, where four other medical workers were confirmed to have been infected over the past week. The latest case is a nurse who had tested negative on Tuesday last week, Minister of Health and Welfare Chen Shih-chung (陳時中), who heads the CECC, told a news conference. However, on Thursday, she developed symptoms, such as nasal congestion and a cough, and a second test yesterday found that she was infected, Chen said. She is the head nurse of a ward where two
VIGILANCE: While two of the cases are family members of a nurse, there is no sign of community spread and the source of infection is identifiable, the CECC said The Central Epidemic Command Center (CECC) yesterday reported four new domestic COVID-19 cases associated with a cluster infection at a Taoyuan hospital. Since the first case was identified on Tuesday last week, five healthcare workers — two doctors and three nurses — at the Ministry of Health and Welfare’s Taoyuan General Hospital have tested positive for the virus. Minister of Health and Welfare Chen Shih-chung (陳時中), who heads the center, said that two of the four new cases are the husband and daughter of a nurse (case No. 863) who had earlier been confirmed to have COVID-19. The husband (case No. 864)
PILLARS OF DEMOCRACY: US Ambassador to the UN Kelly Craft posted online after the virtual meeting that Taiwan should be able to share its successes in global venues President Tsai Ing-wen (蔡英文) and US Ambassador to the UN Kelly Craft yesterday held a virtual meeting, during which Tsai described Taiwan as a “force for good” that deserves a place on the world stage, while Craft reaffirmed Washington’s support for Taiwan’s international participation. The virtual talk was held at about 11am, after Craft’s trip to Taiwan was abruptly canceled. She had been scheduled to meet with Tsai in person at the Presidential Office in Taipei yesterday morning as part of a three-day visit to Taiwan. On Tuesday, the US Department of State canceled all of its planned trips, citing a need
Don Quijote, the biggest discount store in Japan, is opening its first store in Taiwan today. The three-story Don Don Donki store in Taipei’s Ximending (西門町) area, which operates 24 hours a day, has already created 400 jobs, the Ministry of Economic Affairs (MOEA) said in a press release. Many Taiwanese, including Taipei Deputy Mayor Vivian Huang (黃珊珊), consider a trip to Don Quijote an essential stop in Japan. “I have been to Don Quijote at least 10 times myself,” Huang said yesterday at a news conference announcing the store’s opening. “They are rendering an important service, because we cannot travel