The Media Oxpecker: Copyright Wrong Turns

april 15, 2011  12:16 pm
Every Friday we round up media & tech industry news you may have missed.


  • Thousands of doctors, through a group called Medical Justice, are apparently trying to use copyright law to "control and remove unflattering reviews" to online review sites. But as Joe Mullin notes, a group of law professors is now challenging the practice, saying it's illegal and against the purposes of copyright.

  • Speaking of copyright, Righthaven has dropped a copyright-infringement lawsuit a 20-year-old chronically ill and mildly autistic blogger amid tons of negative publicity.

  • U.S. web advertising continued to grow rapidly in 2010, surpassing newspaper ad revenue for the first time ever, according to the IAB. Meanwhile, ZenithOptimedia says the same thing will happen on a global scale by 2013.

  • Think of it like a high-tech version of finger-painting: Adobe's newest release of Creative Suite includes a Photoshop Touch Software Development Kit that lets Photoshop users work tablets into the mix as creative tools.

  • In other tablet news, forecasts show that Apple's operating system is poised to retain nearly 69 percent of the tablet market in 2011, despite all the new tablets running the Android platform.

  • The mobile web and mobile apps mean "authority is dead" for marketers, as attention shifts to the people, says digital account director Tina Unterlaender.

  • Unpaid bloggers, led by labor activist Jonathan Tasini, have filed a $105 million class-action lawsuit against the Huffington Post and AOL, based on a claim of unjust enrichment -- a claim at least one intellectual property attorney thinks won't get very far.

  • Meanwhile, looking at the ad-sales side of the HuffPo/AOL merger, paidContent reports that AOL this week refined its approach to focus more on five specific advertising categories: CPG/Health, Travel, Automotive, Finance and Entertainment.

  • Ad optimizer Rocket Fuel has picked up $6.6 million in its third round of funding; the company uses artificial intelligence and machine learning to try improving the relevance of displayed ads.

  • In other tales of venture capital, the social reading app Flipboard says it has raised $50 million in its latest round of funding.

  • The New Yorker this week made a move to increase its user engagement online by offering a Jonathan Franzen story on the web only to users who liked the magazine's Facebook page.

  • Twitter troubles? Fortune reporter Jessi Hempel says there is "no shortage of drama" at Twitter, which she says is coping with "CEO shuffles ... secret board meetings, executive power struggles, a plethora of coaches and consultants, and disgruntled founders."

  • The San Diego Union-Tribune is getting into the online-only game with its purchase of the "trendsetting lifestyle website DiscoverSD.com." paidContent's Joseph Tartakoff says the deal is "a seemingly rare example of an individual newspaper purchasing an online-only local competitor."

  • The Craiglist Foundation has launched a new website, LikeMinded, which aims to foster community involvement and local action by aggregating community projects that tackle issues ranging from crime to the arts.

  • Legendary reporter Bob Woodword on what will be on Google CEO Eric Schmidt's tombstone: "I killed newspapers."

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