Most of the regular readers of TheLibertyVoice.com are probably aware, the website was offline for about 10 days this month. This was a completely unexpected consequence of processing a domain registration transfer, and the hosting account was separated from the domain name. It took GoDaddy the better part of a week to fix it. I apologize for the inconvenience. Many people wrote me that they were going into “truth withdrawal.”
So, to those who thought that the site was shut down because of a Department of Homeland Security investigation coincidentally timed with the 9 year anniversary of 9/11, you can rest easy.
However, this does lead me to an interesting crossroads.
You may or may not be aware, there is currently an aggressive war being waged on behalf of the mainstream media by an company called Righthaven. The company has a unique business model: They purchase the copyrights to articles published by mainstream newspapers, magazines, etc. that appear online, and then sue websites and blogs that repost those articles without permission.
Here are a couple of articles that discuss this issue:
To date, every blogger they have gone after has been sued for $75,000 plus surrender of their domain name ownership. Many bloggers have settled for $5,000, and kept there domains. But they have stopped reposting material that could get them targeted again.
It seems that Righthaven’s goal is actually just to get the settlement and put a little money in the pockets of the lawyers. If they can silence the voices of dissent in the meantime, that’s a bonus.
This is a pretty serious threat to internet freedom, so much so that Lewrockwell.com has gone to the trouble of scrubbing their enormous history of articles to ensure they are bulletproof from future attacks. Check out what Lew has to say about it here.
So, The Liberty Voice is also at a crossroads. We can continue to reprint articles without permission, hoping that the Fair Use Clause of the U.S. Copyright law is strong enough to protect us from being attacked.
Or, we can begin a transition to all original content that we have been granted permission to use.
Either way, we need our dedicated readers to help out. We either need to build up a legal “rainy day fund” in case we get sued, or need spend the money to get reprint rights and permissions from every source we use from now on.
As a free publication, and without a paid staff to find a dedicated group of advertisers to offset our costs, The Liberty voice is in a financial bind. Currently, we are $1,000 short from being able to publish our Fall 2010 issue. We need your help.
We also are long overdue on a complete website overhaul. We want The Liberty Voice to be bigger, better, and faster than it is now.
Also, I would like to build up a “rainy day fund” of $5,000 as a safety net in case we run into any legal trouble. I know that we would be able to have legal representation free of charge. However, if we needed to settle a lawsuit quickly and inexpensively, it would be nice to have the option. I would hate to see The Liberty Voice shut down again….maybe permanently.
So, if anyone can give $500, $250, or $100 as a one time donation it will go a long way to making sure The Liberty Voice is around for a long time.