[mythtv-users] Free US/Canada Listings

R. G. Newbury newbury at mandamus.org
Tue Sep 11 22:12:09 UTC 2007

Rod Roark wrote:
> From: "R. G. Newbury" <newbury at mandamus.org>
> ...
>> A scraper writer who publishes his code, so that others may
>> circumvent a technological measure is clearly a criminal under the
>> DCMA  see 17USC s.1201 and 1204.  (try thomas.loc.gov). There is a
> I don't understand your repeated references to the Defense Contract
> Management Agency.  They might take exception to this.

I'm sure that there were lots of people who were confused by my 
inadvertent typo especially with the Code reference right there.

I must not mis-spell the DMCA again. I must not mis-spell the DMCA again.

>> limited area in which a screen scraper may be legal. It must be
>> written to scrape pure data, which data is not protected by any
>> technological measure, and which data is not copyrightable.
>> Remember that pure data, such as telephone directory listins, or tv
>> schedule listings is not copyrightable. TV show descriptions may be
>> copyrightable text, however, depending on whether the party being
>> scraped wrote that text, or is merely transmitting it. So the line
>> is fine and also implicates questions of fair use copying. If it is
>> scraped for personal use, then it can be a fair use copying. It all
>> depends....
> You have no idea what you are talking about.  Unless you can tell us
> where you got your law degree from, you'd best not be giving legal
> advice on this forum or anywhere else.  IANAL but I'm pretty sure you
> can get in trouble for that.

Ll.B. Queen's University, Kingston, Ontario, 19975, Called to bar by the 
Law Society of Upper Canada and enrolled by the Supreme Court of Ontario 
1977. And I'm really worried about 'getting into trouble' when I have 
never dealt with you are a client, you have never asked for assistance 
from me, and my "advice" is 'it depends'. You going to argue that you 
are going to rely on that?

>> Well, the list maintainers live and work in the US. Their entire
>> livelihoods and assets could be affected by someone who decides not
>> to exercise the courtesy of "self-censoring" themselves by not
>> posting ON THIS LIST. I do not ask, and I do not think the devs ask
>> (or demand) that anyone not post about scrapers on lists which deal
>> with scraping. It is not a core requirement of myth, and is better
>> discussed on lists where the users are conversant with the
>> technology.
> There are perfectly valid reasons to discuss scrapers within the
> context of MythTV.  For an example, see my own plea for help from
> earlier this month at:
> http://mythtv.org/pipermail/mythtv-users/2007-September/192342.html
>> And the 'worst' is far more damaging than a letter from someone.
>> They could effectively be bankrupted by the need to defend
>> themselves from a groundless complaint.
> In the U.S., anybody can sue anybody for anything, and cost them large
> sums in legal fees.  That's a hazard of living in this country.  Those
> who would censor themselves for fear of that do not deserve to remain
> free.
> Really, I don't know what your agenda is in spreading FUD like this
> so repetitively, but I find it plain offensive.

Yes, in the US anyone can sue anyone for anything. Not without good 
reason has the US been called 'the litigious hates'. Although the purely 
legal aspects of the US system work quite well, from up here, the 
procedural structure which allows for unwarranted and vexatious 
litigation, without penalty, is disgusting. Up here, and in most of the 
common law world, the loser in the litigation pays the winner's legal costs.

And the Fear, Uncertainty and Doubt arises exactly because the 
uncertainty already exists, compliments of your Congreecritters legal 
drafting so we cannot predict whether some stupid and arrogant 'content 
owner' might decide to make a claim against someone who did not *do* 
anything, but discussed how it might be done. Since Isaac does not seem 
to write scrapers, he probably does not want to be exposed to that sort 
of thing, when there is no need for it to happen. He has made it clear 
that he does not want this list used for discussion of illegal matters.

If you wish not to censor yourself, yoy can get your own soapbox to talk 
from. This one is not yours (not mine either for that matter).

If the screen-scrapers union moves their conversation to a list hosted 
outside the USA, there will be exactly nil risk to all of them *for 
talking* and their First Amendment rights will not be impinged upon.

My agenda is to ASK that people not talk on this list about 'enabling 
circumvention of technological measures protecting a copyrighted work.'

              R. Geoffrey Newbury			
            Barrister and Solicitor
       Suite 106, 150 Lakeshore Road West
          Mississauga, Ontario, L5H 3R2

         o905-271-9600 f905-271-1638
           newbury at mandamus.org

        Helping with the HTTP issue
<a href="http://www.w3.org/Protocols/">HTTP</a>

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