The Latest Issue of E-Commerce Law & Policy has an article by Lana and Philip Haworth (non practicing Barristers) on AllofMp3, entitled The ‘Allofmp3.com’ case: analysis and developments. It is a clear and well written piece, concentrating mainly on the Moscow Court decision to clear ex Mediaservices boss, Denis Kvasov and allofmp3 of copyright infringement for the period he was in control. It also does a good job of explaining the likely interpretation of the recent changes to Russian copyright law which could/should close the loop-hole that allofmp3 and similar sites are perceived to have been exploiting. One strange omission from the article is at the end when the authors conclude with “what is likely to tip the balance in favour of the rights-holders is the support of the credit card companies like visa and MasterCard. Anxious to protect their own reputation, they are now refusing to process customer payments to websites that are considered to be operating in violation of copyright laws”. Leaving aside the fact I am aware of several sites that still accept MasterCard – including at least one run by media services – it also seems to ignore the decision against the credit card companies and the Russian agent of Visa – and its decision to disconnect the Alltunes’ (allofmp3 desktop client/itunes like store) payment system. The Moscow court apparently found Visa acted illegally by not fulfilling the business agreement it had with Alltunes, when no ‘court’ had ruled the site breached copyright laws.
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