Having had way too much experience with the negative aspects of the DMCA lately, I was pleasantly surprised to find an article at Plagiarism Today referencing DreamHost’s blog post on Dealing with a DMCA Crook.
I love the fact that DreamHost goes out of its way to be clear that the DMCA can be used with no legal basis:
While the DMCA does offer some major benefits to both copyright holders and web hosts like DreamHost – legal immunity, woo-hoo! – it’s not always used as a force for good. Occasionally, unscrupulous types (and I’m looking at you, Church of Scientology!) will attempt to use the DMCA as a cudgel to take down sites that they don’t like, even when they are clearly in the legal right under copyright law.
Even better is the fact that DreamHost stands up to those attempts:
Liability issues aside, we’re not about to knowingly help someone silence valid criticism by going along with false or overly broad DMCA Notifications.
There was an obviously non-infringing incident, a person who did not want criticism, and a DMCA takedown. Without doing even the least amount of fact-checking, MediaTemple told me to take down the content within 24 hours, or they’d do it for me.
When I talked to an individual at MediaTemple, I was told that this was corporate policy so that they were not at risk. That’s the legal immunity part.
The bigger risk, though, is that free speech suffers when merely alleging that an incident has occurred is the full and complete basis for censorship … at least in my opinion.
While I can understand MediaTemple not wanting to accept any legal risk whatsoever, I wholeheartedly applaud DreamHost for shouldering their part of the burden of the ongoing fight to keep freedom free.
Kudos to DreamHost![tags] dreamhost, mediatemple, dmca, legal, risk, censorship, john koetsier [/tags]
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