Mattel has been ordered to pay $1.8 million in legal fees to Tom Forsythe, the Barbie-mocking photographer who they sued 5 years ago. In addition, the federal judge who made the order has thrown out Mattel's case, calling it "groundless and unreasonable." This is a tremendous victory and precedent for creative cultural recyclers! hurrah!
For more details, see Forsythe's site, hosted here by Detritus.net.
The IP world is buzzing with news that the publisher of recordings of shortwave numbers stations sued and reached a favorable settlement against mega-stars Wilco, who sampled the Conet Project CDs without permission on their 2002 release Yankee Hotel Foxtrot.
At issue: who can really say they own something they simply recorded off the radio? Is that creativity?
The FragMental Storm program is a great random image collaging toy. Give it a search term and watch it look on the internet for it, grab related images and text and start mixing them together and moving them around in various ways. Fun.
Monolith is a computer program that creates a data file given 2 other files. The resulting file has no data related to the original files but can be reconstructed from one of the original files.
As the author says, "Things get interesting when you apply Monolith to copyrighted files."
UPDATE: lots of good discussion and comments of this on Copyfight.
This is really really interesting and I like how the author provides extensive philosophical and logical account of the implications for file sharing and other copyright issues. This is one more example of how digital technology will probably eventually make copyright pretty close to irrelevant, though of course the bad guys are working on their technology to prevent that. ironically their efforts are also making copyright irrelevant, as Lawrence Lessig has pointed out many times, the situation that brought him to coin the phrase "copy duty" in his first book - the idea that IP owners have an obligation to make their works available to a certain extent. Technology will allow them to lock it up much tighter than IP law has ever expected, which means culture starts to suffocate.
Timothy Noah of Slate speculates that Judge Roy Moore, the ex-judge from Alabama who got into trouble over a marble monument last year, tried to copyright the 10 commandments.