News and Views

ORI Advisor Doug Kari Published in Ars Technica

Sometimes all it takes to alter the course of history is one pissed-off person. Supap Kirtsaeng wasn’t a crusader or lone nut; he was just an eBay trader who got backed into a legal corner and refused to give up. To help pay for grad school at USC, he sold textbooks online—legitimate copies that he’d purchased overseas. But academic publishing behemoth John Wiley & Sons sued Supap, claiming that his trade in Wiley’s foreign-market textbooks constituted copyright infringement. The implications were enormous. If publishers had the right to control resale of books that they printed and sold overseas, then it …

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LA Times Opinion: New bill would protect the market for used high-tech goods

It may be hard to imagine as you gaze upon your shiny new iPhone 6, but there just may come a day when you’ll want something even newer and shinier. At that point, you may decide to sell your iPhone on eBay or Craigslist to offset the price of its replacement. But what if Apple said you couldn’t sell a working version of one of its products? What if Apple demanded that buyers of its used gear pay a hefty fee to activate the operating system, or required them to pay for a service contract? Article posted here.

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eBay Exec Tod Cohen Discusses Ownership Rights on eBay Radio

Yesterday, Tod Cohen, Vice President of eBay Inc.’s Global Government Relations team, spoke about the importance of protecting owners’ rights and the Owners’ Rights Initiative on eBay Radio.  In recent years, there have been attempts to restrict the ability of individuals to resell items that they have legitimately purchased.  In 2013, the Supreme Court took up a case where a graduate student named Supap Kirtsaeng bought fully authentic textbooks through friends and family in Thailand and sold them in the U.S. on eBay. He was sued by the book publisher, who claimed that copyright law barred his sales because the …

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