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Wednesday, 8 October 2003

AOL TIME WARNER TO RECRUIT EUROPEAN ANTI-PIRACY COUNSEL

In today’ Times, AOL Time Warner is advertising to recruit a dedicated “European Anti-Piracy Counsel.” The position has arisen “due to a significant increase in internet and hard goods audio-visual piracy.” The lucky appointee will have a varied diet of work, including “negotiating” with offending parties and their lawyers, developing “technology-driven anti-piracy systems and solutions” (in other words, anti-circumvention devices) and lobbying for the protection of Warner Bros’ rights throughout the European region.

Although “piracy” hasn’t reached the same level in Europe as in the US because fewer Europeans have access to high-speed internet access, the IPKat suspects that the creation of this position foretells a US-style approach to combating the problem. This is after all an American company creating a job with an American-sounding name. The idea of “negotiating” with infringers reminds the IPKat of the approach that has been adopted in the States, particularly RIAA’s “Clean Slate” programme (where downloaders own-up and undertake to remove illegal downloads from their hard-drives in return for a promise that RIAA will not prosecute them) and the series of settlements that have come out of the 261 cases that RIAA has filed against alleged illegal downloaders. The IPKat also wonders if lobbying for Warner Bros’ rights will essentially mean lobbying for US-style protection to be extended to Europe.

View some of Warner Bros’ valuable intellectual property here, here, here and here
Thinking of applying for the job? Essential background info here and here


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