DMCA starts to hit online sale of offline goods

An article from CNET today reports that an online retailer who is dedicated to selling out of date sewing patterns has been taken off of the net by his Hosting Provider (Digital River) due to complaints by pattern manufacturers Simplicity and McCall Patterns. Their claim is that he didn't buy the patterns, and therefore doesn't have the right to sell them.

Digital River, for its part, claims that the shield provided by the DMCA gives the customer no recourse when the company is complying with what it things may be a valid take down request.

This makes it much safer for the company to just comply with the request than to investigate or resist, thus opening up DR to a potential lawsuit from the complainants for aiding the infringer.