Nice Try … But, No
I wrote about this a while back. Two newspapers, the Las Vegas Review-Journal and the Denver Post, had entered into an agreement with a company called Righthaven LLC, giving them the authority to go after copyright violators. In principal, not a bad idea – copyright violations are rampant online and news organizations need to protect what they have created. Hard to argue with that.
Unfortunately, the news organizations’ legal agreement with Righthaven only gave them the authority to sue for copyright violations and a federal judge has found that since Righthaven doesn’t own the copyright, and copyright cases can only be filed by the copyright owner, they lacked legal standing. And, according to attorneys for the Electronic Freedom Foundation (which represented the defendant in this one case), Righthaven may have, ahem, perpetrated, “fraud upon the Copyright Office.”
(Thanks to Erin Neff for the lede on her Facebook feed.)