Wednesday, January 18, 2012

No post today because we are being sued for copyright infringement...

I have never, and will never, use this blog for political messages. This is a personal message. EP and I know firsthand what it is like to have someone come after your website for copyright infringement. Another personal blog we own (not has received several cease & desist letters from a single company because our URL matches the name of their company. They claim by owning that URL, we are infringing on their trademark. It isn't even a question of content or what is at the site. By using the URL that they want to have, they consider us in violation and have threatened such. A business going after an individual for a blog of personal family photos.

Until now, the threat has been held to letters to us. But with SOPA and other current bills before congress, this won't have to go to court.

If SOPA were active right now, the threat of lawsuit to a website can include the company that hosts the website. In the case our other URL, the lawyer could bypass a letter to us, bypass proving violation in court, and simply threaten Yahoo, our host, with participating in the copyright violation. And Yahoo will pull the plug on our site, as the $70 a year we pay to them is way less money than the amount they could lose in court fighting for a website they don't care about.

Make no mistake. These bills will not harm actual copyright violators as much as they will hurt personal sites and small businesses when bigger businesses see that they can shut down competative websites with a threat written by a lawyer in a letter. Without trial or explanation.

For more information, visit the badly named but well intended and informational site

If you don't feel comfortable doing the whole "Meet your senator thing", because who has time for that, then send them an email. Make sure blogs like, who have no money to fight a legal battle, don't have to worry about posting a 40-year-old image for a VW ad without having their website shut down.

Tomorrow we will return with VW-related content. And we will continue to do so for as long as we can.

Thank you,


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