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Yellow Pages Not Copyright

 
 
Lawrence D'Oliveiro
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      02-15-2010
<http://computerworld.co.nz/news.nsf/newmedia/court-shock-right-to-copy-directories-upheld>:

The case affirmed that factual databases, such as a telephone directory,
residential listings or event schedules, are not covered by copyright
law and therefore can be duplicated by anybody, including commercial
competitors.

Of course, you’ve got a lawyer for yellow.co.nz saying Australian and NZ
copyright law are “different”. But why should they be, on such a fundamental
point?

 
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peterwn
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      02-15-2010
On Feb 15, 10:24*pm, Lawrence D'Oliveiro <l...@geek-
central.gen.new_zealand> wrote:
> <http://computerworld.co.nz/news.nsf/newmedia/court-shock-right-to-cop...>:
>
> * * The case affirmed that factual databases, such as a telephone directory,
> * * residential listings or event schedules, are not covered by copyright
> * * law and therefore can be duplicated by anybody, including commercial
> * * competitors.
>
> Of course, youve got a lawyer for yellow.co.nz saying Australian and NZ
> copyright law are different. But why should they be, on such a fundamental
> point?


Case law can diverge between Australia and New Zealand. AFAIK, NZ
copyright legislation is based on old English copyright law (since
revamped AFAIK). Interestingly, no NZ cases seemed to be mentioned but
the hoary old copyright cases were - both Australia and England.

This decision seems to be an 'about face' compared with Desktop
Marketing v Telstra which Telstra won (note there was an appeal on
that one). It will need careful reading of the cases to see the
differences. It is more complex than 'Telstra lost this one, therefore
it is open season on Yellow Pages' both in Australia and NZ.

Computerworld very kindly linked to the judgment (via 'Justice Gorden
ruled that').
 
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Sweetpea
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      02-15-2010
On Mon, 15 Feb 2010 22:24:01 +1300, Lawrence D'Oliveiro wrote:

> <http://computerworld.co.nz/news.nsf/newmedia/court-shock-right-to-copy-directories-upheld>:
>
> The case affirmed that factual databases, such as a telephone
> directory, residential listings or event schedules, are not covered
> by copyright law and therefore can be duplicated by anybody,
> including commercial competitors.
>
> Of course, you’ve got a lawyer for yellow.co.nz saying Australian and NZ
> copyright law are “different”. But why should they be, on such a
> fundamental point?


I thought that the Yellow Pages was merely a compilation of adverts for businesses whereas the White
Pages was an alphabetical listing of telephone subscribers?


--
"Filtering the Internet is like trying to boil the ocean"
 
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peterwn
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      02-15-2010
On Feb 16, 7:19*am, Sweetpea <(E-Mail Removed)> wrote:
> On Mon, 15 Feb 2010 22:24:01 +1300, Lawrence D'Oliveiro wrote:
> > <http://computerworld.co.nz/news.nsf/newmedia/court-shock-right-to-cop....>:

>
> > * * The case affirmed that factual databases, such as a telephone
> > * * directory, residential listings or event schedules, are not covered
> > * * by copyright law and therefore can be duplicated by anybody,
> > * * including commercial competitors.

>
> > Of course, youve got a lawyer for yellow.co.nz saying Australian and NZ
> > copyright law are different. But why should they be, on such a
> > fundamental point?

>
> I thought that the Yellow Pages was merely a compilation of adverts for businesses whereas the White
> Pages was an alphabetical listing of telephone subscribers?
>


Historically all 'business' customers (those that Telecom will not
sign up as 'residential') were entitled to one free Yellow Pages
listing but could sign up for listings under extra categories and for
display advertisments. When the Post Office ran the phone system, the
Yellow Pages would have been about the only truly commercial
enterprise the Government ran.

AFAIK, a business customer now has to arrange White and Yellow pages
listings separately from ordering a phone but presumably still get one
free listing in each. The default is a 'silent' number.

 
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Matty F
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Posts: n/a
 
      02-16-2010
On Feb 15, 11:33 pm, peterwn <(E-Mail Removed)> wrote:
> On Feb 15, 10:24 pm, Lawrence D'Oliveiro <l...@geek-
>
> central.gen.new_zealand> wrote:
> > <http://computerworld.co.nz/news.nsf/newmedia/court-shock-right-to-cop....>:

>
> > The case affirmed that factual databases, such as a telephone directory,
> > residential listings or event schedules, are not covered by copyright
> > law and therefore can be duplicated by anybody, including commercial
> > competitors.

>
> > Of course, youve got a lawyer for yellow.co.nz saying Australian and NZ
> > copyright law are different. But why should they be, on such a fundamental
> > point?

>
> Case law can diverge between Australia and New Zealand. AFAIK, NZ
> copyright legislation is based on old English copyright law (since
> revamped AFAIK). Interestingly, no NZ cases seemed to be mentioned but
> the hoary old copyright cases were - both Australia and England.


A NZ judge a few years ago found that a yellow pages competitor was
not allowed to use the word yellow, and charged the competitor $30,000
court costs, thus putting them out of business.
Now that "yellow" is not copyrighted or whatever stupid legal term
applies, when is the $30,000 going to be paid back?
 
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Lawrence D'Oliveiro
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      02-16-2010
In message <d1c0e599-1aed-46fc-a230-
http://www.velocityreviews.com/forums/(E-Mail Removed)>, Matty F wrote:

> A NZ judge a few years ago found that a yellow pages competitor was
> not allowed to use the word yellow, and charged the competitor $30,000
> court costs, thus putting them out of business.
> Now that "yellow" is not copyrighted or whatever stupid legal term
> applies, when is the $30,000 going to be paid back?


That would have been a trademark issue. As far as I’m aware (IANAL),
trademarks are not supposed to mean anything. So a company providing a
telephone directory couldn’t trademark the words “telephone directory”. But
“yellow” doesn’t mean anything in the context of a telephone directory
business, so it can legitimately be used as part of a name to distinguish
your company from competitors—i.e. a trademark.
 
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victor
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Posts: n/a
 
      02-16-2010
Matty F wrote:

>
> A NZ judge a few years ago found that a yellow pages competitor was
> not allowed to use the word yellow, and charged the competitor $30,000
> court costs, thus putting them out of business.
> Now that "yellow" is not copyrighted or whatever stupid legal term
> applies, when is the $30,000 going to be paid back?


Never
Yellow Pages is still trademarked
 
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peterwn
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Posts: n/a
 
      02-16-2010
On Feb 16, 8:33*pm, whoisthis <(E-Mail Removed)> wrote:
> In article
> <(E-Mail Removed)>,
> *Matty F <(E-Mail Removed)> wrote:
>
>
>
> > On Feb 15, 11:33 pm, peterwn <(E-Mail Removed)> wrote:
> > > On Feb 15, 10:24 pm, Lawrence D'Oliveiro <l...@geek-

>
> > > central.gen.new_zealand> wrote:
> > > > <http://computerworld.co.nz/news.nsf/newmedia/court-shock-right-to-cop...>
> > > > :

>
> > > > * * The case affirmed that factual databases, such as a telephone
> > > > * * directory,
> > > > * * residential listings or event schedules, are not covered by copyright
> > > > * * law and therefore can be duplicated by anybody, including commercial
> > > > * * competitors.

>
> > > > Of course, you ve got a lawyer for yellow.co.nz saying Australian and NZ
> > > > copyright law are different . But why should they be, on such a
> > > > fundamental
> > > > point?

>
> > > Case law can diverge between Australia and New Zealand. *AFAIK, NZ
> > > copyright legislation is based on old English copyright law (since
> > > revamped AFAIK). Interestingly, no NZ cases seemed to be mentioned but
> > > the hoary old copyright cases were - both Australia and England.

>
> > A NZ judge a few years ago found that a yellow pages competitor was
> > not allowed to use the word yellow, and charged the competitor $30,000
> > court costs, thus putting them out of business.
> > Now that "yellow" is not copyrighted or whatever stupid legal term
> > applies, when is the $30,000 going to be paid back?

>
> Australia does not equal New Zealand.


Be that as it may, there are many similarities in the two countries'
IP law, and the judges of both countries will hold precedents from the
other in high regard unless they conflict with statutory law.
 
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peterwn
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Posts: n/a
 
      02-16-2010
On Feb 16, 11:10*am, John Smith <(E-Mail Removed)> wrote:
> Lawrence D'Oliveiro wrote:
> > <http://computerworld.co.nz/news.nsf/newmedia/court-shock-right-to-cop....>:

>
> > * * The case affirmed that factual databases, such as a telephone directory,
> > * * residential listings or event schedules, are not covered by copyright
> > * * law and therefore can be duplicated by anybody, including commercial
> > * * competitors.

>
> > Of course, youve got a lawyer for yellow.co.nz saying Australian and NZ
> > copyright law are different. But why should they be, on such a fundamental
> > point?

>
> We will have to wait and see.


See:
http://jdo.justice.govt.nz/jdo/GetJu...gmentID=164961

This concerns a successful injunction application against a NZ Yellow
Pages imposter. In essence, they stripped Yellow Pages database and
repackaged it as their own. This included business and geographic
categorisation which is the copyright aspect Yellow Pages relied on. A
similar application in Australia would probably have succeeded. If
there is strong prima facie evidence that the alleged imposter
utilised in some way the original, the chances of a successful
injunction application skyrockets.

If you want to publish your own Purple Pages (or whatever), then visit
each business and professional in NZ and obtain names, addresses,
phone numbers and areas of business. Yellow Pages will not be able to
touch you. If your feet get sore you can grab a Yellow Pages, phone
every firm in the Yellow Pages and ask for similar information.
Yellow Pages would not be able to touch you. You might be able to
scan Yellow Pages (or strip the database) to build up your basic name/
address/ phone number file with impunity, but if you accidentally let
through a 'trap' entry you could be in it.

If you get lazy and simply copy through the business catergories, the
trap will spring shut on you - in NZ or Oz.

Someone one day may get a Manila 'boiler room' telemarketing centre to
ring every number in the Yellow Pages, and re-enter business
categories advised by the respective businesses. When this happens
big cracks may start appearing in the Yellow Pages monopoly.
 
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Lawrence D'Oliveiro
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Posts: n/a
 
      02-16-2010
In message <6dab9446-d2a0-4dca-
(E-Mail Removed)>, peterwn wrote:

> See:
> http://jdo.justice.govt.nz/jdo/GetJu...gmentID=164961
>
> This concerns a successful injunction application against a NZ Yellow
> Pages imposter. In essence, they stripped Yellow Pages database and
> repackaged it as their own. This included business and geographic
> categorisation which is the copyright aspect Yellow Pages relied on. A
> similar application in Australia would probably have succeeded.


What about the White Pages? Are they copyrightable in NZ as well?
 
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