RPE downtime

Relentlessly Progressive Economics (old site at progecon.wordpress.com) was suspended earlier today by WordPress due to a complaint about copyright violation. We are working to cleanse our posts so that they are within the definition of fair use (though this is contested terrain).

Wikipedia’s article on fair use of copyrighted material is here.

3 comments

  • janfromthebruce

    I’m so sorry. This is one of the best blogs going.

  • Thanks, Jan. We appreciate the feedback, and thanks for piling on with comments.

    It is kind of a bizarre situation we are in. The site was effectively shut down without any prior notice, based on an allegation. No trial, no defence, and no plaintiff was revealed to us. And even though we are in Canada, US law is being applied becuase WordPress is in the US.

    My read of the wikipedia article is that it is not at all clear that we are in violation anyway — only the courts could make such a ruling. I attended a seminar on blogging and copyright law and felt that we were within reasonable bounds. But as I said, this is contested terrain.

    Whether or not we are legally justified, we are kind of hooped on this one. Welcome to the hardball tactics of US copyright enforcement.

    As it turns out we have been in the process of setting up a new site on a different server, which we hope to get up and running as soon as posslble. More to come …

    In the meantime, once bitten, twice shy. We are reviewing any posts we have made from major daily papers that include the entire article, so as to shorten them substantially, or just kept to the first few paragraphs with the link.

  • This episode has been rather kafkaesque. WordPress has not told us which post(s) violate the rule or even what the rule is. Apparently, it is incumbent on us to figure out and apply US copyright jurisprudence based on Wikipedia or risk being shut-down again. Obviously, we will make a good-faith effort to comply, but it would be nice to have some guidelines.

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