Tuesday, January 02, 2007

Think before you Link -- Crap rules

Here's a lump of coal for the entire Internet industry:

A Texas judge has ruled that linking to a Web page violates copyright. Declan McCullagh News.com reports that SFX Motor Sports has won a case against Robert Davis, a man who operates Supercrosslive.com, a website which linked directly to audio files of motorcycle races on SFX's website.
Here's a question for the Honorable Sam Lindsay, the North Texas U.S. District judge who decided the case:

Can you have a copyright violation if there's no copying involved?

Websites regularly link to other websites. No permission is needed, and no laws are broken. A 2000 case established the legality of "deep linking" into any page of a website. Take away the ability to link and you take away the basic glue that makes the Web work. You'd have no Yahoo (YHOO), no Google (GOOG), no blogs.

I am still linking ( catch me :-)

Any Web user could figure out the location of the files, and if SFX wanted to prevent people from going directly to the audio files, a trivially simple change in its Web server configuration could have stopped them from doing so.

How does prohibiting deep linking (last major precedent was the Scottish "Online newspaper" case) harm Google or Yahoo? It is easy not to have your site indexed past the front page, and SFX would love as much traffic as possible to its front page.

there is a difference to linking to a page, versus pulling specific content on that page to an unrelated website.
For example, what if I could link to your blog which when the link on my website was clicked on it would open a frame on my website that just showed the title and body of your article, and lets say I was able to market my website better, and surrounding your framed in article was advertising I was getting paid for.

I don't think you would be too excited about that happening.....we typically think of links as something being clicked on and taking us to a destination, not brining that destination to the current site, that is where the theft or infringement is occuring...and hence why the court ruled as it did. A mere reference to a website via a link to that website is not what the court is looking to ban, it is the theft or infringment of significant content that is in affect taken from another website.

Have you not tried yahoo or google's Image and Video search feature? It does basically the same thing, provide direct links to materials from a site. This ruling is totally ridiculous, and Mr. Davis is acting like a moron for trying to go against well trained "sharks". If this isn't overturned anytime soon, its going to have dire repercussions for the net.

Really, if a website wishes people to not be able to link their audio or video files, then configure it to where this can't happen. This is as simple as this!!

Think before you Link........cut cut cut!!! Think before you go to court.

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