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1 Bob Dillon  Sun, Oct 7, 2012 5:14:55pm

New business opportunities abound. And then, I probably wouldn't buy it in the first place without a release up front.

I'm sure there will be mutual reciprocation overseas. /

2 Sophia77  Sun, Oct 7, 2012 8:35:48pm

Oh man this would be ridiculous. Lots of people make money selling stuff when times are hard, or, just because they enjoy doing it.

Anyway, what about folk art, things like that, never had a copyright in the first place? Or, say it's a painting but the artist is unknown or long dead?


3 Sophia77  Sun, Oct 7, 2012 8:36:18pm

PS buying used stuff is how a lot of us get along, plus, it's good for the environment.

4 Mostly sane, most of the time.  Sun, Oct 7, 2012 9:02:27pm

Hmm. I can't see that this would be ridiculously hard to enforce. Nope.

Garage Sale police, anyone?

5 watching you tiny alien kittens are  Sun, Oct 7, 2012 9:33:15pm

It seems the author of the article has the issue a little confused...

"The case stems from Supap Kirtsaeng’s college experience. A native of Thailand, Kirtsaeng came to America in 1997 to study at Cornell University. When he discovered that his textbooks, produced by Wiley, were substantially cheaper to buy in Thailand than they were in Ithaca, N.Y., he rallied his Thai relatives to buy the books and ship them to him in the United States.

He then sold them on eBay, making upward of $1.2 million, according to court documents. Wiley, which admitted that it charged less for books sold abroad than it did in the United States, sued him for copyright infringement. Kirtsaeng countered with the first-sale doctrine."

A comment on the site points out the real issue involved and links to the Scotus blog for a proper description of the case...

Shana Black
36 minutes ago

The case reference is here: [Link:]

The issue is the unauthorized importation of a work into the U.S., not reselling your grandmother's book collection.

The relevant statute is 17 USC 602:(a)1:

(a) Infringing Importation or Exportation.—

(1) Importation.— Importation into the United States, without the authority of the owner of copyright under this title, of copies or phonorecords of a work that have been acquired outside the United States is an infringement of the exclusive right to distribute copies or phonorecords under section 106, actionable under section 501.

Shana Black

6 wheat-dogghazi  Mon, Oct 8, 2012 4:37:35am

John Wiley & Sons publishes, among other items, university physics texts, which are hideously expensive and getting more expensive with every new edition that's just like the previous edition with just a few things changed.

The Cutnell & Johnson intro physics text, for example, lists for $164 (print) and $79 (Kindle) at Amazon. (9th edition). More specialized texts, for upper level subjects, can be double that. So, STEM majors (like my son) have book bills each year that can exceed $500.

I know publishers have to make money, but their new editions, which are almost an annual event, make it next to impossible for college students to save money by buying used books. And, as a teacher, I found it next to impossible to buy used older editions to sell to my students. Once the new editions come out, the publishers recall the unsold old ones from textbook suppliers. So, we have no choice but to pony up and buy the latest editions.

With true entrepreneurial spirit, the fellow in question here took advantage of a lower-cost source of up-to-date texts to make money while helping out cash-strapped students. I can't blame him, really, and I can see why Wiley is a bit pissed that he's running a competing distribution business outside their approved channels. But I can't imagine his small-scale operation has dented their sales so badly to warrant the expense of a lawsuit all the way to the Supreme Court. Perhaps Wiley has gotten advice from the RIAA and MPAA.

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