Archive for March, 2014

Hope on the Metadata Front

Wednesday, March 5th, 2014

In a recent ruling, the court said that CafePress, a defendant in an infringement case, wasn’t clearly able to claim the Safe Harbor of the DMCA and noted:

Here, the Court finds that, at a minimum, Plaintiff has offered sufficient evidence to create a dispute of material fact as to whether CafePress’s deletion of metadata when a photo is uploaded constitutes the failure to accommodate and/or interference with “standard technical measures.” From a logical perspective, metadata appears to be an easy and economical way to attach copyright information to an image. Thus, a sub-issue is whether this use of metadata has been “developed pursuant to a broad consensus of copyright owners and service providers.” Accordingly, the Court cannot conclude, as a matter of law, that CafePress has satisfied the prerequisites of § 512(i).

In plain English, the court is saying that stripping metadata may result in a service provider’s loss of the free pass of the takedown notice system. It’s not a done-deal yet, but it is a positive sign.