Mr. Perrelli regularly represents the recording industry in cutting-edge intellectual property, technology, and anti-piracy litigation. He has represented the recording industry in a host of cases arising under the Digital Millennium Copyright Act (DMCA), as well as in copyright infringement and digital piracy litigation. He has also represented the record industry and recording artists in a series of copyright royalty proceedings before the Copyright Royalty Board.From what I can tell, the Associate Attorney General is primarily responsible for a variety of divisions involving civil litigation, none of which seem to involve IP issues (except perhaps Antitrust). He doesn't oversee the Criminal Division, which prosecutes IP crimes. So I doubt the copyleft has much to worry about from Perrelli's appointment. But it's still nice that someone who at least understands the importance of the fight against piracy will be near the top of the DOJ. I can't wait for the outrage that will be vented when Obama gets around to choosing his White House IP Czar.
Yglesias also uses his post as occasion to make a typical copyleft rant against the music industry:
the recording industry has decided to adopt an overwhelmingly litigation-based approach to coping with technological change, rather than trying to be innovative in terms of their products or business practicesOf course he cites no evidence for this, and it's laughably false. Sure the music industry litigates -- that's what any industry would do when people steal their products. But to claim that it has an "overwhelmingly litigation-based approach to coping with technological change" is to ignore the myriad new ways that music can be accessed now, that didn't exist 10 years ago, from iTunes to YouTube to Amazon.com to MySpace Music to Napster (the legal version), to scores of others. Unfortunately I don't have actual numbers to back me up, but I'd be willing to bet that the amount of financial resources the major labels have devoted to developing new digital markets over the past decade -- through technological development, marketing, forming business relationships, etc. -- has exceeded the amount spent on litigation by several orders of magnitude. I'd even be willing to bet that the recording industry employs vastly more deal-making lawyers than litigators. For Yglesias to say that "the recording industry has decided to adopt an overwhelmingly litigation-based approach to coping with technological change" is simply to ignore the evidence that contradicts his oft-stated anti-industry bias.