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Rapp On This

For Chrissakes, Al

by Paul Rapp June 1, 2011

Here we go again. Last year, loaded up with mountains of money, shiny lobbyists, phony statistics and cheap rhetoric, Big Media landed on Congress and nearly passed a bill called COICA (“Combating Online Infringements and ...

Offa My Cloud

by Paul Rapp May 19, 2011

Everybody’s been talking about the Cloud for some time now. Microsoft, in a series of typically cloying advertisements designed to communicate ideas to folks who aren’t all that bright, has actors proclaiming like so many ...

Comin’ to Getchoo

by Paul Rapp May 4, 2011

Seven years ago, record companies decided the best way to combat online “piracy” was to sue people. People like you and me. Mostly, the industry focused on college kids using peer-to-peer networks like Kazaa and ...

Art Attack

by Paul Rapp April 20, 2011

Last October I got a call from a woman named Melanie Gold, who lived in Warwick, in Orange County. Melanie was a teacher who’d applied for, and had been awarded, a ...

Up Against the Paywall

by Paul Rapp April 6, 2011

Last year I reported on a lawsuit in which Eminem’s production company had successfully argued that it was entitled to 50 percent of record label revenues from the sale of digital downloads, instead of the ...

Czarina, Czarina

by Paul Rapp March 23, 2011

For as long as this column has been here, I’ve been making the point that the one thing that makes enforcement of online infringements so scary is that it inevitably involves ...

Paging Mr. Brianwash

by Paul Rapp February 9, 2011

The Shepard Fairey/Obama “Hope” saga has more or less sputtered to a disappointing halt, but a related and much weirder dispute has jumped in to take its place. Fairey is the shallow and showboating graphic designer ...

Goodbye and Goodluck

by Paul Rapp January 26, 2011

I was more than a little saddened to see that Keith Olbermann was taken off his 8 PM perch at MSNBC. There was a time when I watched his show Countdown religiously, every night. I’d ...

What’s in the phone, punk?

by Paul Rapp January 12, 2011

I’ve rung this bell a bunch of times in the past and I’m gonna keep ringing it: Your right to privacy is slowly and steadily going down the dumper. Something happened last week that demonstrates ...

If It Walks Like a License . . .

by Paul Rapp September 8, 2010

Eminem’s da man. He’s behind a decision that was issued by the federal appeals court in California last Friday that may bring down the record companies entirely. Turns out a lot of musicians are owed ...

In Fringes

by Paul Rapp March 10, 2010

It’s just one of those serendipitous things that, in my law practice, I get waves of similar matters thrown at me all at once. Maybe it’s a gaggle of writers with publishing or licensing deals ...

Big Media Is Watching You

by Paul Rapp February 25, 2010

We’ve been watching how the Obama administration has been handling information and intellectual- property issues—these things never break in neat, red state/blue state ways. Bill Clinton, in fact, probably did more damage to rational IP ...

Post-Apocalyptic Precedent

by Paul Rapp February 11, 2010

Remember a few years ago when MASS MoCA got into a huge brouhaha with Swiss installation artist Christoph Buchel? Sure you do. Buchel was putting a massive art thing in their football field-sized Building 5 ...

Playing Monopoly

by Paul Rapp January 28, 2010

This week the federal Department of Justice’s anti-trust division filed what it termed restrictions on the proposed merger between music industry giants Ticketmaster and Live Nation. These two companies already dominate primary ticket selling, the ...

Eyes on California

by Paul Rapp January 14, 2010

While the mainstream media have been ranting incoherently about irrelevancies like Harry Reid, Jay Leno and Sarah Palin, something truly remarkable has been taking place in California. On Monday, in a San Francisco federal courtroom, ...