Disney Silences Blogger–Another Fair Use Case


Mickey might wear white gloves, but the Mouse has long arms and grip of steel. Humor-challenged Disney has shut down an internet critic’s website, Spocko’s Brain.
On the site, the blogger/ critic posted audio files of on-air comments made by right-wing talk show hosts at Bay Area ABC radio affiliate KSFO. He also sent letters to advertisers on the station, including AT&T, Bank of America, Visa, MasterCard, and others–pointing out the station’s content and directing them to his blog to hear proof through his audio files. Advertisers started to yank their ads.

KSFO’s hosts usually rant about NY Times editor Bill Keller, Islam, and their own advertisers.

On Dec. 22, he got a cease-and-desist letter from ABC Radio, claiming copyright violations. And then–his ISP cut him off. Coincidence? Hardly. Tom Siebert at Media Post, writes:

Neil Simpkins, spokesperson for 1&1, says the company gave Spocko one week to remove the material, and when he did not, took down his site. He says the company is particularly leery of the audio files, adding that 1&1 would “probably be more than likely” to allow the blog back if Spocko used transcripts of the show as opposed to actual audio files of what aired.

Spocko argues fair use of the copyrighted material. FBLA is very interested in seeing what happens next.