How ReDigi, Apple, and Amazon Will Use the Cloud and the Digital First Sale Doctrine to Resell Music, E-Books, Games, and Movies

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Volume 15, Issue 3 (Mar 2014)

ReDigi is a cloud based internet company that facilitates the buying and reselling of pre-owned digital music. A recent ruling against ReDigi by the U.S. District Court for the Southern District of New York seemed to cast doubt upon its business model. This article analyzes the decision in Capitol Records, LLC v. ReDigi Inc. and a loophole, known as ReDigi 2.0, left open by the ruling that would still allow consumers to buy and sell “used” digital content exclusively in the cloud under the first sale doctrine. This could include not only the resale of music, but also e-books, games, and movies. It also reveals plans by Apple and Amazon to change the landscape of the sale of digital content by building their own cloud based resale markets predicated on the first sale doctrine and models similar to ReDigi 2.0. These efforts will be supported by each company’s own patent or patent pending technology, including Apple’s revolutionary new model for Digital Personal Property. The Article concludes by arguing that copyright holders should support these pioneering efforts rather than embrace streaming services, the worst of which, Grooveshark, has faced a barrage of lawsuits for infringement and failure to pay royalties while allowing users to upload and share copyrighted music in the cloud for free.

Full title- Why Rent When You Can Own? How ReDigi, Apple, and Amazon Will Use the Cloud and the Digital First Sale Doctrine to Resell Music, E-Books, Games, and Movies

John T. Soma and Michael K. Kugler, Why Rent When You Can Own? How ReDigi, Apple, and Amazon Will Use the Cloud and the Digital First Sale Doctrine to Resell Music, E-Books, Games, and Movies, 15 N.C. J.L. & Tech. 425 (2014), available at http://ncjolt.org/wp-content/uploads/2014/04/Soma-Final.pdf.

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