This Week In Techdirt History: May 5th – 11th

from the as-’twas dept

Five Years Ago

This week in 2019, there was a legal fight over whether it’s protected speech to flash your headlights to warn of hidden cops. We looked at how little the FCC had done to police wireless location data scandals, and how it was doubling down on bogus claims about broadband availability, as well as hiding details about fake net neutrality comments, and ignoring phone companies ripping people off. Apple was engaging in some more silly trademark aggression, this time over a bicycle path in Germany, while a motorcycle rally was continuing to assert trademarks that had been invalidated. And a broad coalition of people were calling on Congress to bring back to Office of Technology Assessment.

Ten Years Ago

This week in 2014, what was Congress voting against? Well… bringing back the Office of Technology Assessment. Meanwhile, we looked at the ways broadband companies were killing net neutrality without actually violating it and trying to make the internet more like the old, broken phone system. Congress was also looking at competing NSA reform bills, the better of which had already been watered down, and the two sides eventually reached a compromise. And we wrote about how easy it is to casually violate copyright and how the world of copyright policymaking seems allergic to facts (as quickly demonstrated by an industry report on the dangers of pirate sites that didn’t include any data).

Fifteen Years Ago

This week in 2009, we discussed what (if anything) the Wolverine leak cost the movie at the box office. A popular video was demonstrating the beauty of remixes, while 20th Century Fox was taking down entries in its own mashup contest. California was considering a troubling photo removal law for social media, the UK was looking to wildly increase the fines for copyright infringement, Italy was taking a troubling view of the internet, and there were legal questions about Facebook blocking links to The Pirate Bay. This was also the week when the LA Times dug up and spread the funny little story of why SMS text messages are limited to 160 characters.

Filed Under: history, look back

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