From The Digital Reader:
The Authors Guild has just shown us that while they may have grown more author savvy under the new administration they certainly haven’t become any more tech savvy than they were before.
On Friday The Authors Guild published an open letter . . . that calls upon Congress to amend the DMCA and replace the existing notice and take down setup with the notice and stay down setup that has been proposed by the “let’s break the internet” crowd.
Under current US copyright law, internet service providers are shielded from liability for the actions of their users so long as the ISPs respond to legal notices from copyright holders. This is known colloquially as the DMCA safe harbor provision, and it’s the legal bulwark that protects everything from Youtube to online forums.
. . . .
This is what is called the “notice and stay down” system. or as The Authors Guild put it:
We are asking for a “Notice and Stay-Down” regime: once a webhost knows a work is being infringed, it should not continue to receive “safe harbor” immunity from claims of infringement unless it takes reasonable measures to remove all infringing copies of the same work.
There are a couple absolutely ginormous problems with their proposal.
. . . .
The first and most obvious is that the term “reasonable measures” cannot be discretely quantified; it is a matter of opinion. To ask Congress to legislate that idea into law is not a solution to current piracy issues so much as it is an invitation for lawyers to spend years in court running up millions of dollars in fees as they hash out the nuances.
But the larger issue with The Authors Guild’s proposal is that they based it on the mistaken assumption that one can readily identify pirated content.
. . . .
But more importantly, The Authors Guild believes that “Google and other ISPs clearly have the means to keep their sites free of most pirated content”, when in fact a cursory review of piracy prevention efforts makes it clear that it is damned difficult to separate pirated content from the chaff of legally used content.
Link to the rest at The Digital Reader
PG says this would also make the problem of improper take-down notices much greater.