In August, right in the middle of the summer holidays, EXGAE (now X.net) received a certified fax from the lawyers of the Spanish royalties collection society, Sociedad General de Autores y Editores (SGAE), demanding that EXGAE disappear from the face of the earth within the next seven days. If it fails to comply, it went on, SGAE will proceed, without any further notice, to sue EXGAE for damages, unfair competition and infringement of the “SGAE” brand.
The SGAE law firm, Lehmann and Caballeiro, allege unfair competition in regards to the name EXGAE and the nature of the activities it carries out, under the provisions of the Trade Mark Law.
Civil society has already denounced the fact that culture industry multinationals like the SGAE use copyright, patents and economic coercion for censorship, to silence dissidence and to restrict freedom of expression.
Citizens have made it clear that lawsuits and threats will not stop the just development of the digital era.
We’re sorry, but it will no longer wash. The SGAE lawyers will have to find some other business.
And what´s more we doubt that SGAE´s associates would want their interests to be defended in this way.
EXGAE won’t disappear within seven days. EXGAE is here to stay.
Together, we are bringing down a monopoly and building a future that is accessible, sustainable, and beneficial for everybody.
No! to the use of copyright for censorship purposes.
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“(…) Times have changed. The Internet allows the horizontal exchange of information and culture among everybody. We all consume and produce culture at the same time. This is why the means of cultural production must adapt to this new democracy, and not the other way around (…).” EXGAE Manifesto “Greed Breaks the Sack,” July 2008
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