Jimmy Wales, founder of Wikipedia wants to help Richard O’Dwyer, ex-administrator of UK based video linking website TVShack. UK authorities want to extradite Richard O’Dwyer to US authorities for copyright infringements. Jimmy Wales reckons that this case is an example of the ever-growing influence of the copyright lobby over the Internet. Already, Richard O’Dwyer has become popular to the general public for battling the content industry for public interests.
Richard O’Dwyer has been arrested last year by police for operating video linking site TVShack. Although internet activists believe that O’Dwyer was operating the site under UK law and isn’t at fault of breaking them, UK authorities are not happy with the actions of the student cum former site administrator. In March, UK home secretary accepted the extradition request of the ‘pirating’ student from US authorities. An appeal is waiting to the High Court about the controversial extradition which is based on alleged copyright infringements.
Wikipedia founder Jimmy Wales has launched a petition website for O’Dwyer. Alongside, he has requested UK’s Home Secretary for stopping this extradition.
Wales said, “When operating his site, Richard O’Dwyer always did his best to play by the rules: on the few occasions he received requests to remove content from copyright holders, he complied. His site hosted links, not copyrighted content, and these were submitted by users.”
Few days ago, Mr. Wales has met with Richard O’Dwyer and he explained that this clash is an example between civil liberties and the interest of the copyright industries.
He also added, “Copyright is an important institution, serving a beneficial moral and economic purpose. But that does not mean that copyright can or should be unlimited. It does not mean that we should abandon time-honored moral and legal principles to allow endless encroachments on our civil liberties in the interests of the moguls of Hollywood.”