Remote Deletion Technology, License Agreements, and the Distribution of Copyrighted Works

Remote Deletion Technology, License Agreements, and the Distribution of Copyrighted Works

By Joseph E. Van Tassel

J.D. 2011, University of Virginia School of Law

Excerpt from Remote Deletion Technology, License Agreements, and the Distribution of Copyrighted Works, 97 Va. L. Rev. 1223

Introduction

IN July 2009, Amazon Kindle users who had purchased and downloaded a particular version of George Orwell's novel 1984 discovered that this e-book had been remotely deleted from their devices. 1 Amazon claimed it was protecting the intellectual property of the rights holders because the copies were improperly added to the Kindle Store by individuals that did not have distribution rights to the novel. 2 The company refunded the purchase price of the book, but at first end-users had no opportunity to refuse the refund and retain their copies of the e-book. The recall was instantaneous and complete.

Customers expressed anger and surprise about Amazon's action. 3 Two Kindle owners even filed a class-action lawsuit seeking injunctive relief that would prevent Amazon from deleting content from Kindles in the future and seeking damages for those who lost work from the incident. 4 Technology columnist David Pogue also found the incident unsettling, calling it "Big Brotherish" and "scary." 5 He also repeated the comment of a reader who likened the incident to "Barnes & Noble sneaking into our homes in the middle of the night, taking some books that we've been reading off our nightstands, and leaving us a check on the coffee table." 6

This incident illustrates a new development in the business of distributing copyrighted works - the possibility of remote deletion. Remote deletion describes the ability of a distributor to wirelessly remove content from a consumer's possession without that consumer's consent at the time the ...

Lexis.com subscribers can access the full text of Remote Deletion Technology, License Agreements, and the Distribution of Copyrighted Works

Non-subscribers can order the full text of Remote Deletion Technology, License Agreements, and the Distribution of Copyrighted Works for US $12.50 (+ tax)

....

Lexis.com subscribers can explore/search Copyright Law resources on Lexis.com or access any of these Mathew Bender Copyright Law publications:

Non-subscribers can purchase Copyright Law treatises/resources and Mathew Bender publications from the LexisNexis Bookstore  

For more information about LexisNexis products and solutions connect with us through our corporate site.