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Friday, 10 December 2010 09:50

Copyright trolls demand Drudge Report domain

Written by Nick Farell
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Claimed that it used a picture without permission
Copyright troll Righthaven has demanded that the high-profile online magazine the Drudge Report hand over its domain name.

Righthaven is an outfit which acts as a legal enforcer for the various newspapers and magazines. It makes cash by sending out legal letters to bloggers who use its clients material without permission.

One of the demands it usually makes is for the blogger to lose their domain name. Only this time the outfit it is threatening is the Drudge Report, which is accused of carrying a Denver Post photo of a TSA agent searching an air traveller last month.

Righthaven has demanded a federal judge in each of its 180-plus cases to order its targets to hand over their domains. So far  70 of its cases have settled out of court, and their terms are confidential.

According to the Electronic Frontier Foundation Righthaven is using the threat as a method to coerce settlements from rank-and-file websites that cannot afford to defend themselves. According to Wired, in civil copyright litigation, there is no legal basis for such a demand, even if the website is breaching copyright law.

Nick Farell

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