Whispers and Warnings

YOUR TAX DOLLARS AT WORK

Feds spend $125,000 studying sexist adjectives “‘For example, in a masculine work domain where women are…

RIGHT TO BE FORGOTTEN?

Facebook questions use of ‘right to be forgotten’ ruling “The May 2014 ruling, made by the…

WHY YOUR WIFI NEEDS A GOOD PASSWORD!

In high-stakes copyright suit, Cox’s “top infringers” beg for privacy Accused pirate: “I have mild Alzheimer’s/dementia…

WOW, THEIR EXCUSES ARE LAME!

Simply Read Books Faces Complaints of Late Payments, Breached Contracts “A group of Canadian children’s book…

A VERY SAD STORY

Whistle blower: Taking down two media giants “Paul Winkler was never one to easily tear up,…

Whispers And Warnings For March 18th

POLITICAL CORRECTNESS RUN AMOK! Politics, sensitivity lead India to rush to ban books, films "A British documentary. A YouTube comedy clip. A book on Hinduism. Each offended some segment of Indian society, and each was banned or suppressed as a result..." and Banned in India: Rushdie, Murugan, Fifty Shades, and... I CAN'T BELIEVE PEOPLE STILL CALL THIS OUTFIT A "CHURCH." 6 insane ways the Church of Scientology has tried to silence its critics (The "church") "purchased space on 120 billboards and 1,000 bus placards around Los Angeles, publishing ads featuring the journalists' bylines, the newspaper's name, and context-free quotes from their articles that made it seem as if their series was actually endorsing Scientology." AFTER THE LARGE BLURRED LINES JUDGEMENT, EXPECT MORE OF THESE LAWSUITS 8 Songs Accused of Plagiarism That Hit No. 1 on the Billboard Hot 100 "Whether by osmosis, coincidence, common ancestry or, you know, theft, there are plenty of hit songs that sound suspiciously similar to pre-existing material." and Why the 'Blurred Lines' Verdict Is an Uphill Battle for Copycats RELATED: Archived Whispers and Warnings are HERE. …

Whispers And Warnings For January 7th

THE PUBLICATION'S OFFICE WAS ALSO FIREBOMBED BACK IN 2011 At least 12 dead in Islamist terror attack at satirical French publication "Black-clad gunmen shouting 'Allahu Akbar!' stormed the Paris offices of a satirical publication known for lampooning Islam Wednesday, killing 12 and injuring as many as 15 before escaping, French officials said." RELATED: Prophet Mohammed in cartoons: a history "Following deadly Paris attack on Charlie Hebdo, the satirical magazine which published cartoons of the Prophet Mohammed in 2011 and 2012, we round up recent controversies over depictions of the Prophet in cartoons." SHAME, SHAME, SHAME ON HARPERCOLLINS!!! Publisher pulls atlas that omits Israel "The Tablet, a London-based Catholic weekly, had reported that Collins Bartholomew was citing 'local preferences' for leaving out Israel from the 'Collins Primary Geography Atlas For The Middle East.'" THE SAYS THE STORY ISN'T THE REASON HE LEFT. YEAH, RIGHT... Rolling Stone Libel Lawyer Leaves Wenner Media "As Rolling Stone…

Whispers And Warnings For October 8th

THERE'S NOTHING I ENJOY MORE THAN A CREATIVE HEADLINE!! 'Screwing' author allegedly screwed by publisher "The author of 'Creative Screwing: A Woman's Guide to Becoming an Erotic Enchantress of Superlustful Sex' filed a lawsuit accusing her publisher of screwing her out of royalties." Alan Leddon dba Spero Publishing is accused of "refus(ing) to send any more royalties, and stated he would retain all royalties in a separate interest-bearing savings account until plaintiff was off parole." CONTINUED KUDOS TO HACHETTE FOR FIGHTING THE GOOD FIGHT! BOOK PRICES SHOULD BE BASED ON HOW MUCH READERS ARE WILLING TO PAY, NOT BASED ON THE LARGEST ONLINE RETAILER'S DEMANDS. How Amazon's Ugly Fight With A Publisher Actually Started "Hachette's ebook sales have declined, but it remains determined to price its own e-books and loosen Amazon's grip on the market." RELATED - WE (BOOKLOCKER.COM) SUED AMAZON, AND WON. Read more about that here: http://antitrust.booklocker.com/ ANOTHER DAY, ANOTHER MUSIC PUBLISHER GETS SUED EMI Sued In Foreign Royalties Dispute With Monkees Songwriter "EMI Music Publishing is facing a new lawsuit alleging a musician has been cheated over royalties on foreign sales." I'LL SAY IT AGAIN. IF YOU DON'T WANT N*DE PHOTOS OF YOURSELF POSTED ONLINE, KEEP YOUR CLOTHES ON! AND, IF YOU DON'T, DO NOT UPLOAD YOUR PHOTOS TO CLOUD! DUMB, DUMB, DUMB! Google threatened with $100M lawsuit over nude celebrity photos, but case appears weak "A law firm representing 'over a dozen female celebrities' who had their Apple iCloud accounts hacked is now taking aim at Google, saying the search giant faces massive liability for its alleged role in the distribution of private nude photos."…

Whispers And Warnings For October 1st

WOW! DAMAGES REDUCED FROM $7.5M to $750K U.S. judge reduces copyright verdict against ex-MP3tunes chief "A U.S. judge on Monday reduced a $48 million (29.57 million pounds) copyright infringement verdict against the former chief executive of defunct online music storage firm MP3tunes, the latest turn in long running court battles between the music industry and online content providers." DOES THIS MAKE ALL PUBLICATION OF NUDITY IN AZ ILLEGAL...OR NOT? ACLU sues over Arizona 'revenge p*rn' bill "The civil rights group said the law can make any person who distributes or displays a nude image without explicit permission guilty of a felony. The group says that violates the First Amendment..." AND, FOR TODAY'S DIRTY GOSSIP... Publishing Tycoon Sues His Upper East Side Neighbors After Failing To Sell His $25 Million Townhouse "Retired publishing tycoon Dick Snyder is suing his neighbors Meredith and Bryan Verona for $60 million after he was unable to sell his mansion..." THE PUBLISHING STORY THAT NEVER ENDS... Judge approves Apple e-books price-fixing settlement "Apple's agreement to pay $400 million to consumers depends on the outcome of its appeal..." (ALLEGEDLY) USING SOMEONE ELSE'S INTELLECTUAL PROPERTY WITHOUT PERMISSION IS JUST PLAIN DUMB Universal Music Group Slaps Monster With Beastie Boys Lawsuit "Reuters is reporting that a pair of Universal Music Group units are suing Monster Beverage Corp. for sampling several songs co-owned by rap-rock icons the Beastie Boys, who won a similar lawsuit against the drink maker earlier this year..." LIBEL LAWS VARY ACROSS THE GLOBE Woman in the Philippines sued for 'libelous' posts on Facebook "A woman is facing libel charges before the Regional Trial Court (RTC) after she allegedly posted derogatory statements in the social networking site Facebook against a man who owed her money in 2013."…

Whispers And Warnings For September 24th

IF YOU DON'T WANT N*DE PICS OF YOURSELF CIRCULATED, DON'T TAKE THEM! Arizona's New Law Against Revenge P*rn "If (individuals or websites) shared or re-published any of the images of n*de celebrities that leaked online earlier this month, (they) could be charged with a felony under a new Arizona law..." GETTING BANNED CAN OFFER A TREMENDOUS BOOST IN BOOK SALES! Top 20 books they tried to ban "As Banned Books Week starts in America, we look at 20 books that were famously banned..." I FEEL SORRY FOR THIS WOMAN...BUT I DON'T THINK THIS RULING WILL STAND. Rape victim's lawsuit shows the limits of website immunity law Judge: CDA Section 230 isn't "all purpose get-out-of-jail-free card" for websites. "... appeals court ruling yesterday may join the small batch of precedents that set out the murky limits of CDA Section 230. A three-judge panel of the US Court of Appeals for the 9th Circuit has allowed (PDF) an alleged rape victim to sue ModelMayhem.com, a site she says was used by her attackers..." DID YOU KNOW THERE'S A FIRM THAT MONITORS SOME COLLEGE STUDENTS' ONLINE ACTIVITY? Social media policies of student-athletes criticized "Last year, UNC softball players were not allowed to post any of their photos from Halloween on Franklin Street to Facebook - at least, not without a coach's permission." I THINK GOOGLE MAY NEED MORE EMPLOYEES SOON! The British Phonographic Industry (BPI) said it has sent Google 100 million takedown notices "And, now they're complaining 'that the internet search firm does not respond quickly enough.'"…

Whispers And Warnings For September 17th

Links to the stories below can be found here: http://forums.writersweekly.com/viewtopic.php?f=14&t=9389 WARNING - PROFANITY (We are altering the URLs below with asterisks) Amazon owns the domains f*ckamazon.com and boycottamazon.com "Yesterday, after seeing the photo to the right on Twitter, I wondered if the web address f*ckamazon.com was availableÛas a businessman and an entrepreneur, IÌm always looking for new opportunities..." A PUBLISHER MAY BE TRACKING YOUR MOVES ONLINE HarperCollins Is Now Using Digital Watermarks To Stop Ebook Piracy "Publishers have hit upon a solution that they hope will trip up pirates: an invisible, traceable watermark on every ebook sold. These watermarks allow publishers to track the source of the leak and take necessary steps to plug the hole." THIS ADDS TO CNN'S RECENT DIFFICULTIES CNN Ordered to Rehire 100 Workers, Compensate 200 Others by Labor Board "CNN has been ordered by the National Labor Relations Board to rehire 100 workers and compensate an additional 200 others in relation to a labor dispute dating back to 2003." ARE THESE NET ROYALTIES **REALLY* BASED ON NET? Suit over Ellington royalties rekindled "Jazz composer Duke EllingtonÌs grandson has urged New YorkÌs highest court to reinstate his lawsuit seeking half the foreign royalties from EllingtonÌs music for his heirs." IT'S OKAY TO BRIEFLY QUOTE, AND TO LINK BACK, BUT IT'S NOT OKAY TO REPUBLISH THE ENTIRE SITE News aggregation: Fair use, legality and way forward "Is it a dichotomy that while newspapers across the globe are shrinking, news aggregators such Google News, Huffington Post, Pulse, Flipboard and many others have grown in number and popularity." THIS IS GREAT NEWS! Harper to Provide Express Shipping for Indie Bookstores! "From November 3 through January 16, HarperCollins and HarperCollins Christian Publishing will offer expedited (and in most cases two business day) shipping as part of its newly introduced Holiday Express Shipping program for independent bookstores." WHEN CONTENT PROVIDERS DON'T GET PAID If Only Pageviews Were Dollars "...starting at TomDispatch, my piece got re-posted on some 30 blogs and Web zines, from the Huffington Post to Island Breath. For a day and a half, the ratings of my book on Amazon surged." Links to the stories above can be found here: http://forums.writersweekly.com/viewtopic.php?f=14&t=9389 RELATED: Archived Whispers and Warnings are HERE. …

Whispers And Warnings For September 3rd

Links to the stories below can be found here: http://forums.writersweekly.com/viewtopic.php?f=14&t=9387 I'M CURIOUS WHAT INFORMATION EBONY HAS OBTAINED ABOUT THIS TRAGEDY Parents (of classmates) sue 'Ebony' magazine for slander, libel in GA teen's death "Ebony magazine is facing a $5 million lawsuit over its coverage of the death of a Georgia teen found in a school gym mat." IF YOU CAN'T EASILY PROVE IT, DON'T PUBLISH IT! Settlement reached in defamation case over Schapelle Corby book "The publisher and the author of the book Sins of the Father, about convicted drug smuggler Schapelle Corby and her family, have reached a settlement with members of the Corby family in their long-running defamation lawsuit. The Corbys said the book falsely asserted they benefited financially from Schapelle Corby's conviction and sentencing, and that it falsely asserted they were involved in drug-related activity." BARRING A PRE-EXISTING CONTRACT, IF SOMEONE ELSE TAKES A PHOTO OF YOU WITH YOUR PHONE, THEY OWN THE COPYRIGHT, NOT YOU! Who Owns the Rights to Jennifer Lawrence's N*aked Photos? "The copyright of the other images in question is owned by the photographer, not the subject. The site is now demanding proof of Lawrence's copyright or the name of the photographer." I CAN'T BELIEVE A LAWYER WAS DUMB ENOUGH TO FILE THIS LAWSUIT Amazon.com Inc. can't be held vicariously liable for copyright infringement done by its affiliates, a federal appeals court held Aug. 29. "The court held that because Amazon couldn't "supervise and control" the infringement, the company couldn't be sued for vicarious liability." GREAT ADVICE FROM ATTORNEY TROY MEYERSON! Has Your Content Been Stolen? A Lawyer's Guide To Defending Your Online Content "As an attorney who has been advising websites, affiliates, and networks across the country for a decade, I know many Internet marketers see the law as an obstacle. What do I have to disclose? What am I allowed to say in an ad? How quickly do I have to respond to an email opt-out? And so on." Links to the stories above can be found here: http://forums.writersweekly.com/viewtopic.php?f=14&t=9387 RELATED: Archived Whispers and Warnings are HERE. …

Whispers And Warnings For August 27th

Links to the stories below can be found here: http://forums.writersweekly.com/viewtopic.php?f=14&t=9386 ADMIT IT. THE HEADLINE MAKES YOU SMILE! CBS Being Sued Over Bert the Farting Hippo "Folkmanis, Inc., which manufactured the original stuffed animal used as Bert, is suing CBS and affiliated companies, alleging that the network has been selling unlicensed Bert the Farting Hippo toys manufactured by a company in China..." YES, EVEN BOOK REVIEWERS GET SUED! Architect sues The New York Review of Books Over Article by Critic Martin Fuller "Mr. Filler wrote a review of a 370-page book on architecture in which Ms. Hadid's name is mentioned in fewer than 20 pages. Mr. Filler's book review, by contrast, mentions Ms. Hadid in nearly two-thirds of its paragraphs..." APPARENTLY, GOOGLE IS EXPECTED TO COMPLY WITH EVERY COUNTRY'S LAWS Google Autocomplete's Brushes With Libel "Can an automated Google feature that ostensibly helps users with a search be a basis for libel? Courts in Germany, Italy and Hong Kong have had to field that question..." IS RE-ENACTING NON-FICTION COPYRIGHT INFRINGEMENT? 'Deep Throat' production company loses 'Lovelace' copyright case "While Arrow Productions complained that 'Lovelace' copied three key scenes from the 1972 film, Griesa concluded that the recreation constituted fair use under federal copyright law." WHEN YOU THREATEN A LAW FIRM THAT SPECIALIZED IN COPYRIGHT CASES...YOU BETTER HAVE YOUR FACTS STRAIGHT! Getty Images Sued Over Settlement Demand Letter: 'Unfair, Deceptive Scheme,' Copyright Lawyers Claim "Known for demanding payment from unsuspecting web publishers, Getty Images was slapped with a lawsuit for "deceptive business practices. IP Law Group claims it never displayed the Getty-owned image on its website. Rather, the texting-woman photo was syndicated through a plugin operated by Zemanta Inc., a software company that provides third-party content to Web publishers." Links to the stories above can be found here: http://forums.writersweekly.com/viewtopic.php?f=14&t=9386 RELATED: Archived Whispers and Warnings are HERE. …

Whispers And Warnings For August 20th

Links to the stories below can be found here: http://forums.writersweekly.com/viewtopic.php?f=14&t=9385 ARRESTING JOURNALISTS ONLY FANS THE FLAMES OF CIVIL UNREST! Law, History Support Arrested Reporters "Wesley Lowery and Ryan Reilly, the Washington Post and Huffington Post reporters who were arrested Aug. 13 in Ferguson, Mo., while covering the bloody protests in that St. Louis suburb, have history and the law on their side." Duh DUH! Duh DUH!! Duh DUH!!! The Bizarre Story of How the Original Poster For Jaws Went Missing Paul Bacon, one of the foremost book illustrators of the 20th century, created the original black-and-white image for the Doubleday hardcover (pictures in the article). But the artist credited with creating the quintessential 'Jaws' image is Roger Kastel, who became famous in the 1970s for his movie posters... A JURY DISAGREED Lake Oswego mayor: Chris Kyle 'did not lie' "In wake of Ventura defamation verdict, Kent Studebaker tells his story..." THEY'RE NOT SEEING THE POTENTIAL LONG-TERM CONSEQUENCES OF AMAZON'S ACTIONS. REMEMBER WHAT WALMART DID TO NEIGHBORHOOD STORES? WHAT IS AMAZON ENDS UP PUTTING MOST TRADITIONAL PUBLISHERS OUT OF BUSINESS? HOW GOOD IS THAT FOR THE READING PUBLIC?! Amazon.com's treatment of customers means more to US antitrust authorities than how the largest Web retailer pressures publishers and movie studios. "Amazon.com's treatment of customers means more to US antitrust authorities than how the largest Web retailer pressures publishers and movie studios." Links to the stories above can be found here: http://forums.writersweekly.com/viewtopic.php?f=14&t=9385 RELATED: Archived Whispers and Warnings are HERE. …

Whispers And Warnings For August 13th

Links to the stories below can be found here: http://forums.writersweekly.com/viewtopic.php?f=14&t=9384 THE WRATH AGAINST AMAZON SPREADS Plot Thickens as 900 Writers Battle Amazon "Amazon's dream of dominating the publishing world has run into some trouble..." AND... Bestselling authors take out full-page New York Times ad against Amazon "Stephen King and Donna Tartt among those petitioning Amazon to 'stop harming the livelihood of the authors.'" ALLEGED PLAGIARISM (AND MORE) MEANS FALL FROM GRACE LifeWay Pulls Mark Driscoll's Books from Shelves "In a move that had been rumored for some time, LifeWay Christian Resources has suspended sales of Mark Driscoll's books, pulling them from its website and from the shelves of its 180 Christian bookstores." EXCELLENT ARTICLE FROM FINDLAW.COM ON PLAGIARISM! Plagiarism: 5 Potential Legal Consequences "As college students prepare for to start their fall terms, the unfolding saga of Senator John Walsh's plagiarized college paper should act as a warning of the potential perils of academic plagiarism." HARDWORKING, COURAGEOUS STUDENT JOURNALISTS! Newspaper sues for access to surveillance video "A student newspaper covering the January murder of a Purdue University student has filed suit against the university for access to surveillance video recordings showing a confrontation between police and a journalist." SOMETIMES A #2 PENCIL JUST MAKES MORE SENSE... Law students sue when software fails "Perhaps law students were the wrong crowd to anger. Thousands of law students attempting to take the bar exam in 42 states got a nasty surprise: They couldn't upload their answers." GOOGLE ALLEGEDLY HAD THE OPPORTUNITY TO REMOVE THEM, BUT DID NOT Now Google Autocomplete Could Be Found Guilty Of Libel In Hong Kong "A court has ruled that a Hong Kong tycoon can sue Google over its autocomplete results suggesting he has links to organized crime." Links to the stories above can be found here: http://forums.writersweekly.com/viewtopic.php?f=14&t=9384 RELATED: Archived Whispers and Warnings are HERE. …

Whispers And Warnings For August 6th

Links to the stories below can be found here: http://forums.writersweekly.com/viewtopic.php?f=14&t=9383 GIVE UP YOUR DOMAIN NAME, AND SHUT DOWN YOUR FACEBOOK PAGE Amazon Flexes Muscle Against Blogger "On Monday, Elias Saba, owner of the website FireTVNews.com received an email from the company asking him to turn over his domain name because it infringed on their trademark of the word 'Fire,' the go-to name for a number of Amazon's devices." READERS ALREADY TIRING OF E-READERS. THIS IS NO SURPRISE. I GOT BORED WITH MY NOOK LONG AGO, AND ONCE AGAIN READ PRINT BOOKS ONLY. THIS IS ANOTHER REASON AUTHORS SHOULD NOT ABANDON PRINT PUBLISHING. Read or dead: is this the end for the ereader? Only "36% of adults own an ereader (half of them received it as a gift), but only 4% of people surveyed read solely on a digital device." ALWAYS READ THE FINE PRINT! NY Inn Claims on Its Website to Fine Brides $500 for (each) Negative Online Reviews (posted by wedding guests) "A small-town inn is catching big-time heat for its policy of fining brides and grooms for negative reviews their wedding guests post online." SEPARATE AND POSSIBLY SELL??? NOT A BAD PLAN. Gannett to spin off publishing business "Gannett, the owner of USA Today, said Tuesday that it will create two publicly traded companies next year as it moves to separate its broadcasting and digital businesses from its publishing division, a strategic move similarly adopted by competitors to shield more profitable business lines from the decline in print advertising." ONE-THIRD OF EBOOK SALES ON AMAZON ARE FOR SELF-PUBLISHED BOOKS. THAT'S NOT CHUMP CHANGE, FOLKS! Surprising Self-Publishing Statistics "The Author Earnings report takes its data from 7,000 top selling digital genre titles on Amazon's category bestseller lists. It found..." "YOU RUINED MY WEDDING - AND YOU'RE SUING ME?" More dentists and wedding singers insist on non-disparagement clauses "By signing on the dotted line, or agreeing to those endless terms of service, some customers are unwittingly giving away their right to free speech..." FALSELY POSTING ABOUT INDIVIDUALS AND BUSINESSES CAN BE VERY EXPENSIVE! Damages awarded to Belfast man over false ad on gay website "Mr. Swain was awarded a total of £20,000 (plus legal fees), including aggravated damages, to cover both his libel and harassment claims." Links to the stories above can be found here: http://forums.writersweekly.com/viewtopic.php?f=14&t=9383 RELATED: Archived Whispers and Warnings are HERE. …

Whispers And Warnings For July 30th

Links to the stories below can be found here: http://forums.writersweekly.com/viewtopic.php?f=14&t=9382 IF YOU CAN'T PROVE IT, DON'T PUBLISH IT! YOUR FAMILY MAY HAVE TO PAY FOR YOUR WORDS AFTER YOU'RE GONE! Jesse Ventura wins lawsuit over 'American Sniper'; passage to be deleted "A federal jury in St. Paul awarded Ventura over $1.8 million in damages on Tuesday, finding that a section of the book defamed Ventura." HAVE YOU BEEN BULLIED BY AN ADULT ON SOCIAL MEDIA? Bullying not just child's play "Cyber harassment is the adult form of teen cyber-bullying. It is used to elicit hostile reactions toward the victim and may include defamatory posts, copying, altering and sharing of photos without copyright permission, or sending unwanted e-mails and texts." GROSS. JUST...GROSS. Journalists subpoenaed in 'pink-slime' suit "At least four journalists and a writer have been ordered to hand over documents to attorneys representing the largest manufacturer of "pink slime," the latest development in Beef Products Inc.'s $1.2-billion defamation lawsuit against ABC News and others." THIS ISN'T SURPRISING... Why Is Amazon's Net Income Since '97 Less Than Facebook's in 2 Years? "Facebook's profit totals about $5 billion since its second quarter of 2012, the first quarter following its IPO, according to its earnings reports. Amazon's total profit since 1997 is $3.1 billion, though the company's accounting methods vary in some of its quarters, according to financial data firm FactSet." SCHOOL LIBRARIES IN WISCONSIN SEVERELY CULLED BY NON-LIBRARIANS! Librarians concerned over removal of books "Dozens of Unified faculty, staff, students and parents called on the Board of Education Monday night to stop district workers from removing thousands of books..." Links to the stories above can be found here: http://forums.writersweekly.com/viewtopic.php?f=14&t=9381 RELATED: Archived Whispers and Warnings are HERE. …