Thursday, October 25, 2012
From Demand Progress:
Next week, the U.S. Supreme Court will decide whether you have the right to sell your stuff on eBay. Do you really own the smartphone or computer you’re using to read this? If you sold your books, would you be breaking the law? A federal court in New York says you would be, even if you legally paid for and bought them.
It's unbelievable, but trademark and copyright holders are trying to use a legal loophole to take away your right to sell things that you own. The mainstream media is starting to catch on, with the Wall Street Journal just running an article headlined, "YOUR RIGHT TO RESELL YOUR OWN STUFF IS IN PERIL". Please add your name here to fight back ==> http://www.youvebeenowned.org/.
Public interest advocates are taking the case all the way to the Supreme Court, and Demand Progress is joining up with a coalition of groups -- including many of those that came together to kill SOPA -- to support the rights of ordinary Internet users and everyday consumers.
Once again, big entertainment company lobbyists are fighting us in the courts to ensure their profits are given higher priority than consumer rights. But this time the MPAA and RIAA have the Obama administration on their side -- they've all filed legal briefs asking the Supreme Court to restrict our right to resell the things we own.
We only have a few weeks to make our voices heard before the Supreme Court makes a lasting ruling. We are working to defend a long-standing principle known as the "First-Sale Doctrine." This common-sense rule gives us the right to sell most property we own, but big businesses have been trying to chip away at out our rights in the courts. If the Supreme Court supports the lower court’s decision, we won't really “own” anything if any part of it was made in a different country. And practically anything you own -- from your iPod to your house -- could have been made abroad, in whole or in part.
If we lose this fight, practically anybody who wants to resell products they bought -- from Macbooks and iPhones to our clothing and textbooks -- will have to ask copyright holders for permission first. And they'll have the right to deny it!
It's bad for so many reasons: It'll undermine Craigslist and Ebay, hurt the environment, increase incentives for manufacturers to move jobs off-shore, and effectively ban the traditional American yard sale. For more info, please check out Marvin Ammori's article about the lawsuit at http://www.theatlantic.com/national/archive/2012/06/if-youve-ever-sold-a-used-ipod-you-may-have-violated-copyright-law/258276/.