Tech 2.0 for Wednesday, May 8, 2013

Contributor: Matt Davenport
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Updated: 5/08/2013 6:19 pm


A federal appeals panel in Manhattan has expressed support for Google Inc.'s plan to create the world's largest digital library. Three judges on the 2nd U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals on Wednesday spoke positively about the benefits the plan would provide the world. The panel is considering an appeal by Mountain View, Calif.-based Google of a judge's decision on class certification of authors in a lawsuit brought by the Authors Guild. The guild is seeking $750 in damages for each copyrighted book Google copied. It says Google is not making "fair use" of copyrighted material by offering snippets of works. Google has defended its library, now more than 20 million books, saying it is fully compliant with copyright law.

Instead of fighting battles in city after city, a company that offers TV over the Internet wants a federal court to declare it the winner in a legal war with broadcasters. Startup company Aereo is asking that a federal judge in New York to declare its service legal across the nation. Aereo takes free signals from the airwaves and sends them over the Internet to paying subscribers. That business model is being criticized by broadcasters -- but a federal court in New York gave Aereo the legal right to launch the service. Now Aereo wants to expand to Boston -- and CBS says it will sue to block the service there. For its part, Aereo says the additional lawsuits are repetitive and are costing the company money. It wants the U.S. District Court in New York to issue a general ruling that would cover those cities to which it plans to expand, including Boston.

When a mysterious, unauthorized fee appears on your cellphone bill, it's called "cramming" and consumer advocates and regulators worry it's emerging as a significant problem as people increasingly ditch their landlines for wireless phones. The cramming fee is bogus and often small, under $10 a month, and might be listed on your bill as a "premium service" or other generic-sounding charge. Cramming had long been a problem with traditional landline phones, but after pressure from lawmakers and regulators, the largest landline carriers last year said they would no longer allow outside-company billing for "enhanced services" like third-party email and voicemail. Despite the complaints, the industry says it's not really a problem with mobile phones because wireless carriers closely monitor third-party vendors who offer services and place charges on mobile bills.

They haven't done much to ignite their fan base the past few seasons. But the New York Mets have managed to get a buzz in the online world -- thanks to a playful, but false tweet from their public relations man. All season long, Jay Horowitz has been sending out untrue messages on his new Twitter account. Yesterday, he said star pitcher Matt Harvey was given permission to miss tonight's game so he could go to Madison Square Garden to watch an NHL playoff game. Some news outlets and fans believed the tweet -- and criticized the team for giving Harvey the night off. Once he learned the tweet was being taken seriously, Horowitz said: "It's amazing what some people will believe."


2nd Circuit panel speaks positively re: Google's digital library plans http://t.co/jCIr4yIywV

U.S. appeals panel speaks well of Google's digital-library plans. http://t.co/lE1704iWQI

Aereo Looks to Thwart Future Lawsuits from Broadcasters with "Affirmative Statement" from Judge http://t.co/YYiEulWMO4

Wireless cramming: The tip of a very large iceberg http://t.co/lykS2BkuXp

Tiano discusses investigations into mobile cramming and proposed legislation to protect wireless users. #FTCmobile

Jay Horwitz 'just having some fun' With Tweets About Matt Harvey and New York Rangers http://t.co/ClstTllCEd

[Newsday] Jay Horwitz 'just having some fun' with Matt Harvey tweets http://t.co/6PgTWt1Se5
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