IMSLP under attack by Music Publishers Association (UK)

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Irishmaestro
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Re: IMSLP under attack by Music Publishers Association (UK)

Postby Irishmaestro » Thu Apr 21, 2011 3:27 pm

faust wrote:Their lawsuit is frivolous, but please don't turn this in to an ad hominem attack against music publishers and composers who want their protections under current law.
Surely it's clear who I was referring to? I would never launch an attack against living composers, or the people who promote their work.

Anyway - the story would be entirely different if it were a living or recently deceased composer, like Langlais or Steve Reich. The fact, though, is that the work which they cited as an example is PD in at least one jurisdiction, if not more.

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Re: IMSLP under attack by Music Publishers Association (UK)

Postby Philidor » Thu Apr 21, 2011 3:30 pm

faust wrote:this is the Music Publishers' Association of the UK...


That struck me as odd. Why did MPA (UK) decide suddenly to have a go at IMSLP.org? Was it a policy decision or some office junior having a funny five minutes?

And why attack IMSLP.org with a sledgehammer? They could have emailed the site. They could have tweeted. They could have started a thread here. They could had a quiet word on Facebook. They could have written a letter. They could have complained to the ISP.

But no. They used the sledgehammer of a formal DMCA takedown demand to the domain name registrar. Don't they realise how extreme that is? It's what governments do to Jihadist websites - domains publishing on the internet how to make a bomb - or child pornographers. The procedure's designed for extreme and urgent circumstances.

Strange isn't it? Dear old IMSLP treated like Osama bin Laden. I wonder why?

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Re: IMSLP under attack by Music Publishers Association (UK)

Postby joshnewton » Thu Apr 21, 2011 4:13 pm

Here's why. Major decision from the High Court was just handed down regarding the Digital Economy Act. I would suspect that you are not the only site that was hit by the MPA. Here is the link from their website: http://www.mpaonline.org.uk/mpa_news/go ... -judgement

Josh Newton
MMus/Composition - University of Southern Maine
http://www.newtonmusic.com
Josh Newton
MMus / Composition - University of Southern Maine
http://www.newtonmusic.com

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Re: IMSLP under attack by Music Publishers Association (UK)

Postby trilefile » Thu Apr 21, 2011 5:11 pm

Choralia wrote:
imslp wrote:Workaround: You can still reach the site by using either petruccilibrary.org or petruccimusiclibrary.org Note, however, that some links on the site that refer to IMSLP.ORG may be broken; you will have to manually replace IMSLP.ORG with one of the two above domain names manually in the URL bar.

For those having some computer skills, you may add the following line to your local hosts file:

184.107.161.242 imslp.org

This resolves the domain name imslp.org locally on your computer, so your browser is directed straight to the server and you will not need to manually replace any URLs. It's a complete bypass of the domain name suspension.

Under Windows the hosts file is typically located in the the Windows/System32/drivers/etc directory. It requires administrator privileges for editing, so you have to open Programs --> Accessories then right-click Notepad and select "Run as administrator". I guess that similar procedures apply under MAC OS, Linux, etc. .

Max


This is great: thank you very much for this post! The only thing is that I had to type "www.imslp.org" instead of "imslp.org" to get it to work on my machine.

Thank you again,
W.

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Re: IMSLP under attack by Music Publishers Association (UK)

Postby Choralia » Thu Apr 21, 2011 5:27 pm

trilefile wrote:The only thing is that I had to type "www.imslp.org" instead of "imslp.org" to get it to work on my machine.

If you add two lines:

184.107.161.242 imslp.org
184.107.161.242 www.imslp.org

both imslp.org and www.imslp.org should work.

Max

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Re: IMSLP under attack by Music Publishers Association (UK)

Postby trilefile » Thu Apr 21, 2011 5:43 pm

Choralia wrote:
trilefile wrote:The only thing is that I had to type "www.imslp.org" instead of "imslp.org" to get it to work on my machine.

If you add two lines:

184.107.161.242 imslp.org
184.107.161.242 www.imslp.org

both imslp.org and www.imslp.org should work.

Max


Awesome. Also, here are some other details that cropped up on the IMSLP facebook page:

"It works similar in Ubuntu

just open terminal and type "sudo vim /etc/hosts" Then create a new line before the "ipv6" with "184.107.161.242 imslp.org" and save the file. Everything should work perfect now.

I guess it should work in other linux distributions also."

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Re: IMSLP under attack by Music Publishers Association (UK)

Postby Duke » Thu Apr 21, 2011 6:55 pm

joshnewton wrote:Here's why. Major decision from the High Court was just handed down regarding the Digital Economy Act. I would suspect that you are not the only site that was hit by the MPA. Here is the link from their website: http://www.mpaonline.org.uk/mpa_news/go ... -judgement

The parts of the DEA that were challenged weren't really about targeting websites but individuals, and won't go into effect for a few months - while the timing is suspicious, I'm not sure they're related unless their legal person is really confused about what the DEA does - it doesn't look like this MPA was even a party to the case (like many similar groups).

Are the MPA usually this hostile? Reading through some of their (policy-based) material, despite being involved with the PRS and BPI (both at the extreme of the copyright lobby) they seem to be quite sensible and relaxed? It seems odd for them to randomly target this side, and only one work at that - perhaps someone in their offices stumbled across and reported it?

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Re: IMSLP under attack by Music Publishers Association (UK)

Postby steltz » Thu Apr 21, 2011 7:23 pm

According to the MPA's own website:

"The Government has asked Ofcom to review section 17 of the Digital Economy Act. Ofcom are assessing whether the Act’s reserve powers to enable courts to block websites dedicated to copyright infringement could work in practice."

Note the wording "websites dedicated to copyright infringement". Even if the one piece mentioned was still in copyright and had somehow mistakenly got through the copyright review process, that hardly makes the whole site "dedicated to copyright infringment". If MPA's own wording of the Act is correct, then they can't read or comprehend, either willingly or unwittingly, the content.
bsteltz


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Re: IMSLP under attack by Music Publishers Association (UK)

Postby Philidor » Thu Apr 21, 2011 7:41 pm

Duke wrote:Are the MPA usually this hostile? Reading through some of their (policy-based) material, despite being involved with the PRS and BPI (both at the extreme of the copyright lobby) they seem to be quite sensible and relaxed? It seems odd for them to randomly target this side, and only one work at that - perhaps someone in their offices stumbled across and reported it?


I go for cockup not conspiracy or vindictiveness. It was such a weird, over-the-top assault - to launch a domain name registrar take down notice.

And then, having played hard-ball - you can't play much harder unless court or national security officials arrive physically at an address to seize hard drives - to back off less than 24 hours later. It's bizarre, oddball behaviour and not the conduct of an organisation with a worked out, strategic, plan to attack IMSLP.

The truth will out but I reckon it was someone junior who got the wrong end of the stick, acted outside his job description, and had to be pulled back sharpish when the sh*t hit the fan.

And, believe me, the sh*t did hit the fan today on Facebook and Twitter. :lol: It was an all singing all dancing social media nightmare for MPA UK.

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Re: IMSLP under attack by Music Publishers Association (UK)

Postby encephalon » Thu Apr 21, 2011 7:45 pm

Hey -- longtime imslp user, first time forum user here.

I have been lurking on this issue since yesterday when I could not access imslp.org. Has anyone contacted the Electronic Freedom Foundation about this?

Here is the text of a letter I plan to send to Mr. Kirner. Any thoughts?

---------------------------------------
Mr. Kirner,

I am writing to express my disdain for your recent illegal actions regarding the imslp.org domain name. Not only is your action based on indisputable falsehoods, it also resulted in damages including obstruction of legal distribution of public intellectual property. Furthermore, your attempt today to cover up your despicable plot by requesting the removal of electronic communications detailing your illegal action is not only clear evidence of culpability, but an unambiguous demonstration of ill will towards a populous that likely constitutes a majority of the paying user base of the publishers you represent.

I am forwarding details about this incident to the Electronic Freedom Foundation with a request that they focus their vast legal resources in rigorous defense of imslp.org, and that they seek restitution from your organization for damages plus penalties. Furthermore, I and my colleagues will avoid the use of materials from publishers represented by your organization whilst making programming decisions for our professional ensembles.

Copies of this email and links to evidence of your actions have been sent to a selection of popular composers and their publishers. I believe your misguided actions are not truly representative of your membership and thus constitute a dereliction of your fiduciary duty to them.

Sincerely,

[my name here]
Conductor, Composer
San Francisco, CA USA

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Re: IMSLP under attack by Music Publishers Association (UK)

Postby Duke » Thu Apr 21, 2011 7:54 pm

steltz wrote:According to the MPA's own website:

"The Government has asked Ofcom to review section 17 of the Digital Economy Act. Ofcom are assessing whether the Act’s reserve powers to enable courts to block websites dedicated to copyright infringement could work in practice."

Note the wording "websites dedicated to copyright infringement". Even if the one piece mentioned was still in copyright and had somehow mistakenly got through the copyright review process, that hardly makes the whole site "dedicated to copyright infringment". If MPA's own wording of the Act is correct, then they can't read or comprehend, either willingly or unwittingly, the content.

That section of the Act (you can read it here) actually refers to any website that "has been, is being or is likely to be used for or in connection with an activity that infringes copyright" which is insanely vague, and likely to cover IMSLP. However, it does go on to require that the site has a "substantial amount of material" that is infringing. Given IMSLP's lack of legal presence in the UK (I imagine), it probably wouldn't be hard for the MPA to convince a judge of this and get it blocked - the fact that IMSLP is in Canada would make no difference.

But that part of the DEA hasn't been brought into force yet, and the fact that Ofcom was asked to look into this was a clear sign that the government has abandoned this (and that is the impression I've been getting from MPs as well). In my opinion, the reason this is being rejected is because it would likely be illegal under the various European laws. The current plan involves secret negotiations between the UK government, ISPs and the copyright lobby (probably including the MPA) to get "voluntary" web-blocking schemes running - in which case there's no judge, no trial and no due process. But that's still in the future...

I guess that they went with directly contacting Go-Daddy following the success the US's ICE has had with that approach - and it is a pretty easy way of getting things done.

-------------------

On the issue of taking down the email, under English law (not sure about Canada or the US), the copyright in that email is retained by the author, so it's probably infringing copyright from their point of view. There are also issues of breach of confidence/misuse of private information and so on. Most likely, though, they'd have to sue Go-Daddy for that, for presumably forwarding it to IMSLP.

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Re: IMSLP under attack by Music Publishers Association (UK)

Postby thalbergmad » Thu Apr 21, 2011 9:01 pm

faust wrote:
cross-posted, but: this isn't a publisher suing-- this is the Music Publishers' Association of the UK, a trade group that has no business in publishing living composers.


Not my area of expertise Sir, but the following was taken from the MPA e mail:

"The information in this notification is accurate and we confirm, under
penalty of perjury, that we are authorized to act on behalf of the
copyright owner of an exclusive right of that is infringed"

It would appear to me that it is a Publisher initiating this action.

This whole matter stinks to me and paints a rather nasty picture of IMSLP as a site that freely makes available copyrighted material, where in fact an incredible amount of work goes into ensuring that it does not happen. Attacks like this will continue, but IMSLP will also continue.

The fact that the MPA have requested that their e mail not be distributed, could mean that they now realise that their action could be damaging for the Publisher who they are attempting to protect or they realise that their action could result in legal action being initiated against themselves.

Thal

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Re: IMSLP under attack by Music Publishers Association (UK)

Postby mbywater » Thu Apr 21, 2011 9:41 pm

Fascinating story. I think it might make rather a good essay piece for my paper, The Independent. If anyone has any comments, they're welcome to email me on michael[dot]bywater[at]gmail[dot]com. Anonymity/off-the-record etc will of course be respected.

I'll be interested to see what Jake has to say, too...

(And there I was, relaxing at home, looking up the score of BWV211, not a comment piece in my head and a long weekend stretching before me...)

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Re: IMSLP under attack by Music Publishers Association (UK)

Postby mbywater » Thu Apr 21, 2011 9:54 pm

And guess what:

Thank you for your message.

I am currently out of the office, returning on 3 May.

For urgent enquiries, please contact the MPA office on 020 7580 0126.


Best wishes,

Jake Kirner


I confess I'm a little surprised. Not very. Just a little.


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