Apple Asks Bluwiki To Remove Posts

ipod touchApple has taken aim at a wiki site that posted information about an iTunes hash that limited users' ability to sync their iPods with non-iTunes platforms.

Apple complained to the site, Bluwiki, and asked that the posts be removed on the ground that they violated Digital Millennium Copyright Act's anti-circumvention provisions. That law bans trafficking in tools that defeat copyright restrictions.

The takedown notice to Bluwiki said the site was "disseminating information designed to circumvent Apple's FairPlay digital rights management system."

But the material that was targeted doesn't appear to directly deal with FairPlay--Apple's digital rights management software that aims to restrict users' ability to transfer songs to portable music players other than iPods/iPhones.

Instead, the disputed posts seemed to concern attempts to reverse-engineer a database that iTunes creates and places on iPods/iPhones, which makes it difficult for owners to sync their devices with platforms other than iTunes.



Because the information wasn't about FairPlay, or other protections on copyrighted tracks, it's not clear that the Digital Millennium Copyright Act's anti-circumvention provisions apply, according to Electronic Frontier Foundation attorney Fred von Lohman.

"I don't see this as a circumvention issue," he said. "It strikes me as something that's plainly anti-competitive." Lohman added that he had been in talks with Bluwiki founder Sam Odio, but that the Electronic Frontier Foundation doesn't currently represent the site.

Odio said the author of the disputed posts intended only to improve interoperability between platforms.

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