Tag Archives: intellectual property

Guth: What’s in a name?

Why call it Guth? If there’s one question I get asked more than any other about Guth magazine, it’s why I called it Guth. The simple answer is, it’s an Irish word, and an Irish magazine, and unlike English words, most Irish words tend to be available. They’re less likely to be trademarked, less likely to already be in use as domain names, less likely to run into copyright problems…. Read Article →

Platforms yet to be envisaged

The Irish Times is running a competition called Legends of the Fall, and asking readers to submit works of fiction “inspired by the events of the last five years in Ireland”. The original terms and conditions, published by the Irish Times, asserted that “by entering this competition, you are agreeing that any submissions made become the property of the Irish Times.” That’s a copyright grab, and an extraordinarily wide-ranging one…. Read Article →

A torrent of words

I write. As a freelance, I hold copyright on those words. “Ireland’s SOPA” wants to protect those words. But copyright already protects them. My words have been pirated a few times. The first time, articles were cut and pasted wholesale from a website and re-used. Not by a pirate website, but by an old-established company. We eventually settled for a rather handsome sum. More recently, a story I wrote was… Read Article →

Down the tubes

A couple of weeks ago, I uploaded my first video to Youtube – a montage of photographs taken at the Glencolmcille Agricultural Show, set to a music soundtrack by Eunan McIntyre, a local musician. Being a journalist, and living with copyright issues, I first checked with everyone that it was okay to use their work. Everyone consented. To date, the video has been viewed over 800 times by people in… Read Article →

It’s Alive!

This week, scientists created artificial life. Well, sort of. Truth is, once you snip away the press release puff and spin, it’s more a case that scientists copied life. Here’s how the BBC reported what happened: ‘The researchers copied an existing bacterial genome. They sequenced its genetic code and then used synthesis machines to chemically construct a copy.’ In other words, they took an existing template, tweaked it, put it… Read Article →

The death of journalism

Earlier this week, I spent half a day sitting in a district court. The district courts can be worthwhile if you’re a freelance journalist, but they’re a bit of a lottery too. Get in well with some of the staff, and you’ll get a tip off if there’s something interesting coming up. On Monday, I got lucky. The accused hit another car in a car park, left the scene, and… Read Article →

Cash Call

Sixteen months ago, I wrote a story. It was a nice little story, with some good quotes from the main player. I sold it to a provincial paper. I posted the story on my website. Thanks to the vagaries of thesub editing process, what appeared on the website was different to what appeared in print. Among other things, quotes that appeared online didn’t make it into print. Then, a few… Read Article →


The definition of chutzpah used to be the murderer who killed his parents, then appealed to the court for mercy during his trial because he was an orphan. That definition may have to be updated in light of the lawsuit brought against Microsoft in China Dong Zhengwei, a Beijing lawyer, is taking a case against the software giant because an update released last August which checks for pirated copies of… Read Article →

To Every Cow Its Calf

Several news outlets are quite excited over the court order entertainment giant Viacom secured against Google. The eponymous search engine must hand over details of the videos watched by users of YouTube. Viacom claims Google has infringed it’s copyright, while Google says it is not responsible for YouTube content, and removes any material if there’s a complaint. And it argues that the majority of videos on the website are made… Read Article →