More information about previous DMCA abuse here: https://news.ycombinator.com/item?id=29239594
Personally, I would not trust a company this unethical to certify anything. Their excuse seems to be "we're using an external service" but they chose that external service and are fully responsible for these takedowns in their name.
For example they claim to own the copyright to find substring: https://news.ycombinator.com/item?id=29239926
> A statement that the information in the notification is accurate, and under penalty of perjury, that the complaining party is authorized to act on behalf of the owner of an exclusive right that is allegedly infringed.
For example, if the thing you're taking down does use your content, but it falls under fair use, you can still get away with taking it down. There is no objective test for fair use and 512(f) does not mandate one; the criteria is just that you merely considered fair use. And since fair use is a bottomless pit of grey areas, you basically can't get a 512(f) ruling out of a legitimate copyright owner. It only catches the kinds of people who, say, pretend they're Bungie so they can file DMCA takedowns Bungie can't retract in Bungie's name.
>Literally claiming copyright on this description for "find substring": "Given s and x, we want to know the zero-based index of the first occurrence of x in s" //
This is a functional description which has very limited possible English language forms and so it's highly unlikely to qualify for copyright in the first place. Anyone who has enough knowledge to file a DMCA request that is looking at this would consider that it is at worst Fair Use but in all probability is not infringing.
Seems a very strong case, if this quote is a true representation, for a claim of vexatious action.
Also, the above statement is vague. The perjury clause only applies to the final clause which states that the person making the request has the authority of the rights holder. It doesn't apply to the first clause stating that the information is accurate?
I haven't read the DMCA statute in years, so I don't know if the wording in that clause parrots the wording of the statute.
And there seems to this case that is worth keeping an eye on: https://www.techdirt.com/2021/03/11/court-allows-lawsuit-ove...
(1) We have withdrawn the DMCA notice for sympy; Sent a note to senior leadership in Github to act on this quickly.
(2) We have stopped the whole DMCA process for now and working on internal guidelines of what constitutes a real violation so that these kind of incidents don't happen. We are going to do this in-house
(3) We are going to donate $25k to the sympy project.
As a company we take a lot of pride in helping developers and it sucks to see this. I'm extremely sorry for what happened here.
I have received fake DMCA requests from WorthIT Solutions, Pakistan that you guys seems to have hired. It is sent for a simple blog entry discussing about programming algorithm!
I recommend training them or replacing them.
I have taken fair use into consideration.
I have a good faith belief that the use of the copyrighted materials as described above is not authorized by the copyright owner, its agent, or the law. I swear, under penalty of perjury, that the information in the notification is accurate and that I am the copyright owner or am authorized to act on behalf of the owner of an exclusive right that is allegedly infringed.
You aren't even really a content company, this is such a bad look. Your value is in your network of people, not in the content.
Without a discussion of how/why you thought this would be a good idea and how this has been happening on an ongoing basis, we can't really accept your apology.
Proportionate contributions to other projects and individuals would go a long way to showing that you are not just playing lip service to your admission of wrongdoing. You have hurt a lot of people, and you need to make amends for your shenanigans. At the very least, you need to comp any legal fees incurred by your actions.
Personally I like Hacker Rank and consider it a good way to learn about new algorithms but at the same time I do not like the style of interviews that require it and it makes me wish I could leave the industry because it's a waste of time for people with a lot of practical experience and who have a good portfolio of apps/sites they've created.
That said, I would recommend not doing DMCA at all unless it's really serious. Sounds like your company has a lot of problems with this. Think StackOverflow, there are plenty of sites that copy it but I'm not aware of them going after anyone. If anything all the copying of a site makes it more of an authoritative source because a lot of people reference it.
bad hacker rank tests are bad, but not all hacker rank tests are bad.
Could just say, for example, you don't think it's a disrespect to oneself to attend Hacker Rank tests and explain why.
There is an abundance of bad tests out there, but blanket statements that you won't use a tool that is used for assessing candiates is just as rediculas as saying you won't give apply to jobs that ask for your cv to apply.
Comparing it to a CV is a false equivalence because it takes me O(1) effort to make and CV and O(n) to do some stupid timed algorithm test for every company that is interested in the value of my labour.
There are many "in good faith" steps that both parties must do in the interview process, wherein if either party drops the ball it really makes sense for both parties to cut their losses and move on; which I believe is what you are getting at.
There is employment contract for a trial period, because you only know how good coder is when they face real problems/code. Writing sort algorithms on white board might look cool, but in real world you will search internet for best algorithms for your case, look up generic one, so you will not make a trivial error writing it from memory, or just use equivalent of std::sort.
I'd rather not work with people selected this way. There are plenty of companies using much better filtering processes.
You can call me whatever you'd like, but I'm a service provider and I have no obligation to offer my service to anyone.
I don't understand this because as others on this thread have pointed out you have done this before.
Further isn't much of your own content just plagiarized from other people's previous FAANG interviews?
I've never used HackerRank as I view it as something of scourge on the industry but I will probably go to extra effort and recommend to other that they not use it either.
Also @dang, has this post been pinned at the top of the page
for everyone to see.
Edit: guess it's not..
Or better, downvote it.
They should probably never send a DMCA again. It's political suicide in this industry anyway.
We really need a strikes policy for DMCA submitters built into the legislation. Like submit three dubious claims, and you lose your copyright. I've been saying it for literally 15 years.
Shady practice for the bad people who got caught several times. Taking responsibility for them will be ceasing whole business. Just stop doing bad things.
Who ever thought this was a good idea? Those firms and the "monkeys" they hire have an incentive to send takedowns everywhere to make it look like they are "doing something".
But since there are no consequences for sending them to the wrong places, I guess they don't care much.
Oh really? You: commoditize humans by reducing them to a score, you: destroy their public contributions
Sounds like you're a pretty terrible dev advocate. You should be ashamed to show your username and affiliation on HN.
You've abused many other projects, some linked in the comments here, but you only seem to act when there's sufficient apparent public outrage.
1) register the copywrite of the tools you have written inhouse for hacker rank
and 2) ONLY issue DMCA claims based on your registered copywrites.
The questions and peoples answers to them are not something you should EVER have even considered issuing takedown notices for.
Please don’t ever use DMCA in this way again. Even if it were somehow borderline justifiable, your users will be motivated to lambaste your company into oblivion, and to wish non-existence upon your company. Probably not the best posture for anybody concerned.
I hope other companies take note as well.
So you are taking action only after news spilled all over the internet? So I can assume that if no one(in internet terms) known about it (as described in links pointing to other DMCA cases), you would do nothing to remedy your illegal (from moral stand point of view, no real one) actions.
It's only illegal if you get caught and find someone willing to prosecute you. Also if penalty for breaking law is a fine, then this law only applies to poor people.
No - that does seem to be their site. I mean that is disturbing on all sorts of levels. From "that's just poor web dev copy paste", to "those americans won't hire anyone who looks like us" to ... hell I don't know.
that just bothers me
Idea of assigning number to a person and then judging that person based on that number? How it could happen in real world... Also if people are willing to pay for it (even if they don't know about it yet)in capitalism it is a good argument to pump money into it.
The fact that there isn't any downside just shows what poor legislation the DMCA is.
If you told me that the DMCA was written entirely by the music copyright industry and handed to compliant congress members to rubber stamp, I'm likely to believe you.
Only way to make this stop is make companies like WorthIT feel financial pain from their actions.
Issuing false takedowns against organizations whose code you use for free is a pretty bad look.
(It's also a pretty crummy product, I used to use it as an interviewer and am glad I no longer have to.)
> So, I generally have a personal rule against disparaging things that other people made because I know how hard it is to make stuff and how criticism feels. I ignored that rule in this instance only because I've been a victim of DMCA misuse from a company and have learned the hard way that the only real repercussions anyone will face are reputational.
> For context on my experience with HackerRank, I have used both the take-home test product and the real-time test product. It has been almost a year since I have used either, since I left that job.
> I found the real-time product frustrating to use; frequently I could not rely on the candidate seeing the same state I did. I forget exactly what the problem was but candidates were often confused by the console not appearing and things like that. In some instances, either I or candidates were booted out of an interview in progress and had to refresh the page. Usually we worked it out pretty quickly, but losing precious time can make candidates nervous and it's not a great first experience with the company for them. I also found that code execution ran slowly, in both the real-time product and the take-home test -- we weren't running big programs, I'm not sure what was so slow.
> On the take-home side, for context, I was one of several people responsible for the take-home coding test for my department and was also (unofficially) the go-to person to look into assignments that were flagged for plagiarism. I found the plagiarism detection results to be pretty incomprehensible -- sometimes I'd see tests with very high plagiarism scores and no signs of obvious plagiarism, or things like a 90% score with just a few innocuous lines of overlap with the alleged source. I understand that flagging false positives for human review is generally preferred here to false negatives, but my main concern here is that if recruiters within an organization take these numbers at face value, they end up rejecting candidates pretty much randomly, or because the candidate wrote idiomatic code that looks like everyone else's because it's the idiomatic solution in that language.
the problem is really coding interviews in general, not just HR itself. who wants to do this type of shit in a browser anyway?
Which is exactly what it is.
The takedown message is here – https://github.com/github/dmca/blob/master/2022/04/2022-04-1...
And the offending page is archived here, I wonder what part they wanted removed – https://web.archive.org/web/20220114132753/https://docs.symp...
The only real solution here seems to be to find a way to hold HackerRank to account for this (in the most costly way possible), so they face an incentive to do meaningful due diligence and evaluate before partnering with someone that acts as their agent.
Ultimately it wasn't them that did this, but unless they bear a significant cost from doing so, which causes them to pursue their DMCA agent for negligence or breach of contract (or whatever other remedy is available to them), I don't see this type of thing changing.
Once a DMCA agent becomes a liability, the market will be forced to mature, and buyers will need to do due diligence to minimise their likelihood of being opened up to a large and costly battle as a result of the negligence of their agent.
Maybe there’s a case for a consortium of open-source projects that can pool its resources and serve as an insurance policy to fight back against license violations or malicious/stupid DMCA takedowns.
Open source projects should have a kind of union of their own. Then again I wonder if it would ever be possible because corporate money has became a key donation source and in many cases many OS projects themselves have become corporatized.
> If You initiate litigation against any entity by asserting a patent infringement claim (excluding declaratory judgment actions, counter-claims, and cross-claims) alleging that a Contributor Version directly or indirectly infringes any patent, then the rights granted to You by any and all Contributors for the Covered Software under Section 2.1 of this License shall terminate.
Not really. Nor have you considered who the actual author and copyright holder is.
As a software developer, I've surrendered so much autonomy for the sake of convenience. When it works 99% of the time, things are awesome. But god forbid you are the 1%, cause there is usually no talking to real people to get support. The only recourse is shouting about it on Twitter/HN and hope someone notices, thereby leaving everything to chance - that just makes me sad to my core.
You could definitely still blame the company at hand for not having redundancy and having a single point of failure, but the point still stands.
The goodwill lost will now surely exceed the money they saved by not doing proper due diligence. I'm optimistic that HackerRank won't make the same mistake again and other companies might take notice, too.
It would also be nice if Github would implement instant restoration via counternotice as allowed by the DMCA. Implementing only half of the law enables this sort of abuse.
Companies have historically gotten away with these reckless takedowns because the law just requires that "the complaining party has a good faith belief that use of the material in the manner complained of is not authorized by the copyright owner, its agent, or the law." (17 U.S.C. § 512(c)(3)(A)(v))[^1]
In a recent 9th Circuit case, Lenz v. Universal Music Corp[^2], the court held that Lenz could sue Universal Music for a bad faith takedown. Specifically, "failure to [consider fair use] raises a triable issue as to whether the copyright holder formed a subjective good faith belief that the use was not authorized by law."
However, proving that it was in bad faith could be tricky.
> Our help articles provide more details on our DMCA takedown policy and [how to file a counter notice].
Provide a form where an up to date contact point can be submitted that you can forward to the plaintiff and then restore the content. It's that simple. They can deal with litigating the dispute from that point on and Github is not responsible.
EDIT: update here https://news.ycombinator.com/item?id=31092085
1. If you do a web search for "HackerRank DMCA" you will find similar examples of this that have happened in the past (with exactly the same text).
2. The text of the request is not in any way designed to enable a reasonable response. No detail is given about what the infringing content is so there is no way to comply.
3. It is also clear from this and previous cases that whatever process is used to identify potential targets for DMCA yields false positives and no reasonable judgement seems to be applied in whether or not to issue a takedown request.
I also think that GitHub's processes are faulty here:
1. We were given one business day to reply. I replied within 2hrs to say that the request was obviously spam and then sought legal advice. The repo (and website) were shut down before we could get legal advice. One day is nowhere near enough time. The request came in on Thursday night (UK time) and in the UK both Friday and Monday are public holidays this weekend. I don't even know what one "business day" means in this situation.
2. GitHub gives some guidance for how to submit a counter claim but none of the information is applicable to a case like this where so little information is given that is simultaneously impossible to comply with the request and impossible to dispute it. If GitHub makes it this easy to spam DMCA requests then they should also provide some guidance for how to deal with spam requests.
I wonder if the FSF or someone else can come up with a good template response to DMCA requests that just don't have enough information in them. If the request doesn't even explain how you could comply then it should be possible to respond to that in a blanket fashion.
Meanwhile, if we need to make a monetary contribution for your effort or anything more we could do to promote, what would be the best way to do it? If you'd like to send me an email to discuss further, I'm available at vivek at hackerrank
Thank you & sorry!
And here's the thing: if there's a match between the SymPy Docs and something you consider yours, the copying was quite likely in the reverse direction: the solution you claim copies something out of the SymPy documentation (which is legal, but it isn't yours).
> stop. Just stop. Don't send out any DMCA notices at all, not unless you encounter a case of infringement so blatant that it is obvious to all. And then make the decision yourself, don't contract it out.
Sounds great - did you make similar promises last time?
I'm looking at the page that was taken down and it seems to be largely full of pretty basic code snippets demonstrating how to use the Solvers module.
Your DMCA request includes the statements that say, in part, that Fair Use has been considered, that you own the copyright, and that the information in that statement is true and accurate.
Could you elaborate what on that page you consider to be your copyrighted content, and how you came to hold that copyright? Is it the code snippets, as per your comment? Did your company have an employee write that content?
When the DMCA takedown request was being drafted, did someone consider whether those snippets are even qualifies as an Original Work? I'm getting at whether they contain even a minimal level of creativity, as the US Supreme Court has said is a requirement for copyright.
1. Fire WorthIT Solutions (no RCA necessary, do not automate or outsource DMCA, even if it's human based automation)
2. Apologise to SymPy
3. Discuss internally the cost-vs-benefit (more than monetary) of embarking on copyright policing as part of your company's future strategy
4. Blog results of #3
All things considered, this company has done net negative impact to tech industry.
The point is to find another evaluation metric.
Did you give your guy an IDE that he would normally use? That your company normally uses? A real world problem to solve? Resources he would normally use? Resources people at your company use on a day to day basis?
White boarding or using codepen isnt remotely close to evaluation for the actual job, and neither are data structure brainteasers, curious what you and your candidate did.
You got one false positive and now want to use a system known for its false negatives.
I don't understand why people find this practice questionable, it saves time for both company and candidate.
But perhaps a different way of answering your question would be a more apt response?
Take this with a grain of salt, but in my experience of building organizations, it seems to me that in social systems, as opposed to engineering systems / code, the most powerful organizational forces are the second order and tertiary effects of the policies that are institutionally put in place. Not the first order effects.
The first order effect of using HR/LC easy questions might be that it weeds out people who really can't code in a language. And in that result, using HR and LC in your interview process, isn't a bad thing.
But the 2nd order effects of using HR/LC are often disastrous. Because once you start using HR/LC as your FizzBuzz question resource, you've made it easy for interviewers in your organization to start using HR/LC questions for more than just a FizzBuzz replacement. Maybe interviewers go to HR/LC for medium, hard questions. Maybe more?
HR/LC elevate what should be a small (though important!) part of the interview process, to one of the most important, hardest, and complex parts of the interview process. In most interviews I have witnessed in the last few years, this comes at the expense of other things that _should_ be more important parts of the interview process. And that's what is disasterous.
That's the issue with HackerRank and LeetCode. It is intentional from HR and LC's point of view. And is an unignorable, indeed one of the most important aspects of adopting a policy of using HR/LC in your organization.
However, I disagree that that makes HR or LC valuable or a positive in the interview process. Basic DS and Algo questions do not require the types, number, or complicated questions one finds in HR or LC. Such questions are easy to come up with and test, and should be a notable, but minor part of the interview process.
HR and LC take what should be a minor (though important!) part of the interview process, and blow them to huge proportions, and thereby distort and harm the very process they're supposed to be helping. They do this, in an attempt to present themselves as having a larger value add than they actually do.
2. No license is required to work as a software engineer.
3. It is up to each company to verify their candidates.
and you are mistaken that it's up to the company to decide what happens. as an industry of professionals, it is our decision.
As a professional software engineer, you are expected to be proficient at those skills to an extent in which you can demonstrate them in practice.
The burden of verifying you acquired the skills associated with your education falls on the employer.
Fizzbuzz is trivial and should not be a problem for any developer at any level. Writing a binary search function should not be a problem either.
But I agree that the industry's obsession with competitive programming has gone too far in some cases, especially in cases where the skills being tested are not relevant for the job.
In practice, many colleges fail to teach those skills.
And accreditions depend on governments which are sometimes corrupt or inept.
any university in western europe is pretty hard to graduate at without actually having these skills. so it is pointless to enforce coding interviews for those who graduated there. you can’t “buy” a degree there.
If you build software that sounds like a bad idea.
The most valuable companies in the world all converged into the same recruiting processes for a reason.
I appreciate the "fix-it-twice" attitude implied by the RCA promise (Root Cause Analysis for those who also had to look it up). Also, consider recognition and restitution for the unnecessary work you created for the NumFOCUS director, a NumFOCUS lawyer, and the SymPy maintainers.
A $25k donation to NumFOCUS would be a good start.
If you are willing to talk about what happened publicly, I'm starting a podcast/video series to discuss business and open-source. This would make an interesting conversation. Perhaps we can turn this into a positive to raise awareness and inspire better behavior in the industry? Ping me.
Most of which will go to director's salaries. What do these directors do apart from harassing conference members?
I thought about this situation and how your company could make this right. If you would be willing to help improve the SymPy project, I think it would be very well received. If you are interested, please let us know! See Travis Oliphant's reply, you could for example donate some money to NumFOCUS. We are very good with using money that people or companies donate to fund development and we can really boost SymPy forward big time with a generous donation.
Also they take pictures and videos of candidates while taking interviews. Without that permission they don’t allow the test.
They’re not part of the problem - they’re the problem.
At worst, you can try to exercise the controls in the EULA that your victims agreed to, but this sounds like abuse of the legal system.
guess what, it's still offline for DCMA.
I don't think anyone will actually go through the expenses to go to court over a code snippet on Github, unless they're particularly principled, wealthy, and retired and I think Hackerrank will definitely try to send their in their legal team.
By just filing a counter notice, you're also doxing yourself to people who clearly have no interest in following the law.
Github seems to have processed the DMCA counter notice but the content is still offline. From that I gather that Hackerrank filed a lawsuit or the counter notice was retracted somehow, or Github is violating the DMCA by keeping the content offline.
Not quite. The obligation of the service provider when they receive a counter-notice is to inform the person who filed the original notice, and give them 10-14 days to file a court order to block the content. If they don't get that court order in that time, the service provider must put the content back up or risk losing their DMCA safe harbor.
The solution would be to build some sort of cheat detector and punish only the candidate. Don't take down and lose the goodwill of the entire programming community by abusing draconian laws.
You might first investigate just how small the piece of code was on which nearly all of Oracle's case vs. Google rested.
I am sure however you have already assesed this and applied for the appropriate registration for these works that you are claiming to own the copywrite to? right?
A person driving 100 miles per hour down a residential street and crashing into something is an unintended consequence, but not unforeseen.
This may have been "unintended" but when you have a company file DMCA notices on your behalf without proper supervision (especially when they had filed DMCA notices like this against other open source libraries) it is not "unforeseen" for them to file a DMCA notice against a completely innocent project.
At the very minimum the open source library that was affected and their maintainers deserve monetary recompense for the time and stress that your actions have cost them.
Sorry, are you asserting that you hold copyright over solutions that other people write?
edit: Here's an example,
- "In so doing, the magistrate judge agreed with plaintiffs’ assertion that the solution manuals sold by defendant qualified as “derivative works” under the Copyright Act. As in Pavlica v. Behr and Addison-Wesley Publ’g Co. v. Brown, defendant’s manuals complemented plaintiffs’ 187 copyrighted textbooks, had no “independent economic value” and were “meaningless’ without the textbooks because they merely provided answers to questions posed in the textbooks."
https://www.courtlistener.com/docket/4345754/pearson-educati... (the ruling is available here, gratis)
The solutions to a particular textbook are entirely useless outside the context of the textbook, but the solution to "efficiently find a substring within a string" is useful in day-to-day programming. The takedown isn't aimed at the result of "convert 700m to feet", but "describe the process of converting between metres and feet", which is plain ridiculous.
Do you plan to contact GitHub and give them a legally binding agreement to indemnify them for any infringement of HackerRank's copyright in the material they took down (I'm sure there is no such infringement, but by agreeing you won't sue GitHub for restoring the content, you effectively retract the notice and give them no reason to wait the 10 days)?
I think a sincere apology should include steps to urgently minimise the ongoing damage to the existing victims, not just analyse what went wrong to prevent hurting other victims.
Leetcode for instance puts the solutions out there.
There are solutions to most questions on leetcode on GitHub as we speak.
I don’t get it. If your assessment is designed that knowing the solution ruins it then your assessing process is broken.
I’ve literally showed candidates the solution to leetcode questions and they still don’t get it. Trying to remove solutions seems like a poor use of effort imho.
How does any of these have anything to do with copyright infringement in the context of DMCA takedown? Do you even own the copyright to the alleged leaked solution?
literaly everything your assessing is programming 101. its not something that you can or should be asserting any copywrite on.
infact I would challange you to register the copywrites on your questions/answers and see exactly how far you get with that process before you even consider sending a single DMCA notice.
You’ve made a serious mistake somewhere in your reasoning. What you believe is the property of your relatively insignificant enterprise, the whole rest of the world knows damn well is not your property.
Besides, this is small potatoes. Why don’t you copyright Wikipedia, then DMCA WikiMedia, then put your copy behind a paywall.
Your company has issued a DMCA takedown notice for "plagiarized code snippets" against the library-in-questions own documentation? (The take down was issued against docs.sympy.org; linked directly within sympy's GIT repo README.md: https://github.com/sympy/sympy)
And this is an "initiative" your organization has undertaken? Have you thought this through?
Where should engineers who want to learn about sympy go to attain that knowledge?
Where did your team learn about and generate the assessment questions?
Where do you stop with this initiative? Would you issue takedown notices to MDN? Stack Overflow? What about VSCode Copilot?
Oooh boy I can't wait to begin publishing solutions to your company's assessments.
The risks from misrepresenting your copyright in these cases are not small. Diebold Election Systems paid $125,000 in a similar situation: https://www.eff.org/cases/online-policy-group-v-diebold
How can this be legal? Plagiarized is moreover a very conveniently vague word.
By this very vague definition the overwhelming majority of your own content has been seen on various parts of the internet way before you ever started your business.
There can't be a copyright on such a thing and I hope someone fights you in court, this is nothing short of bullying.
How can you shitbags take down SymPy and then show up on HN to actually make light of it with your crapola comments while it remains taken down.
For ch: char in solution.text:
If webpage.html.indexOf(ch) >= 0 then
I get it, I'm an automate-first type of person, too. But it appears your outfit has made a habit of doing this, and you're messing with innocent people for no good reason. Doing that in a `for` loop is irresponsible as hell, and frankly you deserve the bad press you're getting. I highly recommend you reconsider.
Legacy media companies do this kind of thing, too. I hope you're more interested in your reputation than they are.
So which is it? Plagiarized or solutions? Because unless your company actually owns the copyright for the code in question, you have no right to it.
If a Google assessment asks “how many manhole covers are there in New York” and someone decides to create a repo with “Manhole covers in New York: 23,000” there is no copyright claim.
Do HackerRank users affirmatively sign a non-disclosure agreement? I checked your terms and there is not an apparent non-disclosure agreement. If not, there isn’t any legal recourse if users decide to talk about or solve your problems off the platform.
Educational and not for profit use is often protected by Fair Use. I didn’t see the repo in question so I can’t comment on if the use of the material meets the Fair Use criteria.
However if people are sharing their answers to your questions in a repo, especially for educational or non-profit value, there isn’t much you can legally do about it. For example, If I take the GMAT and I discuss a question on Twitter, that’s allowed by Fair Use. If I offer to sell a PDF of the entire test, that would not be protected.
If someone said “hey HackerRank’s Ruby test asked a question about finding the smallest value in an array” and then they posted a solution. That’s absolutely not violating a HackerRack copyright. People even have the right to describe their experience on HackerRank in great detail.
From your own policy: “Content that You own and post on or through HackerRank belongs to You..”
So if someone wants to post their solution to a question, your own terms allow that. It’s their solution, it belongs to the user.
If someone else “plagiarizes” another user’s solution, HR doesn’t have standing for a DMCA takedown. The user that created the content does, but not HR.
However even if HackerRank did own the solutions, there is a high likelihood that Fair Use would be in effect.
I have a strong dislike of HackerRank type companies because it’s pretty rare that those ridiculously academic assessments predict real world performance. They are a screening tool for the lazy. A well designed, relevant code test relating to the work of the company or a solid technical interview is much more valuable in my experience. When I was interviewing with companies, I immediately passed on the job of HackerRank was part of the hiring process. I ended up at a FAANG for over 5 years, so it’s pretty clear that anti-HackerRank bias among potential employees like me have a detrimental effect on recruiting.
it's still offline for DCMA, since Dec '21
Your company does not own the basic algorithms that are the solutions to the tests on HackerRank.
FUCK you HackerRank, for even entertaining the notion of litigating open source projects at scale for no good reason.
FUCK you for taking down the the documentation for a harmless open source symbolic mathematics engine without any justification that I can see.
What content of your shitty ranking company could SymPy possibly have infringed on?
Also an honorable FUCK you to GitHub for your DMCA policy to take down the repository without even a standby period (perhaps with a warning?).
And FUCK the internet in 2022 for its bureaucratic and corporate spirit.
And FUCK me for not having the steel to just take my code off of GitHub. I am part of the problem.
Personally, I like designing and building software and have been doing so for 20+ years but after doing several HakerRank and Leetcode style interviews it makes me wish to do something else.
I’ve had FAANG recruiters tell me “study for hours per day for a few months” and then you can be ready. Even smaller companies focus on leetcode more than actual experience.
I’ve worked with plenty of optimal algorithms in my life but when I do I spend time researching and looking at many examples rather than having to memorize something that shouldn’t be memorized in the first place; but the way the interviews are done it seems like companies just want code monkeys (even the good paying companies).
No other well-paid profession tolerates this style of interview one you have experience. I would never recommend Software Engineering to anyone given the current environment.
Not exactly true, pretty common in finance/trading as well.
So a job that involves complex problem solving in unique situations would be perfectly reasonable to have an IQ test qualification. But not for something like sweeping the floors or working the assembly line in a meat processing plant.
For Software Engineering you have to jump through hurdles each time even if you have accomplished a lot at past jobs. I might be wrong but it feels like there are far more Software Engineers compared to jobs than 10 or 20 years ago.
Granted not all software jobs as the last one I got I just had to interview a CEO and show my portfolio. Seems like the algo challenges are really geared toward Silicon Valley but not it's ending up a lot of tech jobs.
The availability of these sites makes it seem like it's a standard, which adds to the problem. Some small company might not have taken that approach. Now, you don't want to fall behind by not making use of a widely-accepted "standard" practice.
> Now, you don't want to fall behind by not making use of a widely-accepted "standard" practice.
Absolutely. I can understand Google asking you to write a k-way distributed sort off the top of your head, but I've had similar questions from an "enterprise gone unicorn" that were clearly still in the "wtf even is cloud" phase.
especially if the web based editor doesn't support vim style key bindings.
amusing irony that likely parts of a question were lifted from the very source that was subject to the takedown.
bigger problem i have with coding tests is that they check if someone is familiar with some subset of reference material (usually algorithms). in my experience, anyone can pull those from a book in practice and real software engineering has little to do with that and more to do with having the knowledge and experience to avoid making a mess or building weird software.
AFAIK, they're legally required to take down material as soon as they receive a DMCA notice or else lose their safe harbor status.
Github could've easily take the time and wait for SymPy to file counter notice which then allows Github to keep the content up up until courts say otherwise. Github instead elected to remove content immediately. By their choice.
I wonder how many tech companies w/ platforms have any delay. Is there precedent?
European legislators are trying to establish some time limits but these are mostly around toxic content not related to copyright.
Thank you for the link.
If you lose safe harbor status you become liable for infringing content on that service.
Infringement still has to happen and you'd still have to be taken to court and lose, but it's now "as if" you yourself uploaded everything.
So in this instance GitHub would be fine, but if they didn't take down the content then they themselves would become liable for any fringing content on their platform.
Or rather Microsoft would become liable, I suppose.
IANAL. That's just my rough understanding.
Fenwick and West has a lovely 36-page FAQ: https://assets.fenwick.com/legacy/FenwickDocuments/DMCA-QA.p...
> Before disabling any content in relation to this takedown notice, GitHub
> - contacted the owners of some or all of the affected repositories to give them an opportunity to make changes.
> - provided information on how to submit a DMCA Counter Notice.
0: 17 U.S.C. § 512(g)(2)(b) and (c) https://www.law.cornell.edu/uscode/text/17/512
This implies that GitHub is believing the DCMA notice is justified in the first place...
from the request:
> Someone has illegally copied our client's technical exams questions and answers from their official website hackerrank.com and uploaded them on their platform without permission.
Archive of the allegedly infringing page is here.
I feel like hacker rank might be facing an uphill battle for this one.
You should care because paying someone to disrupt totally innocent open source projects is a shitty thing to do. Filing false DMCA requests on your behalf is also illegal. I like to think that if this never got any attention and your reputation wasn’t at stake, you’d still be adamant about doing the right thing. “Perhaps even consider switching“ providers doesn’t reflect the urgency in getting this right.
as a user you literally are not the problem. the problem is the monopolization of technology by a small group of investors, which makes it nearly impossible for alternatives to rise.
why isn't a platform like Github part of the commons instead of a private, proprietary fiefdom? why is it instead the private property of, and part of the investment portfolio of, a person who says things like: "As the majority of hobbyists must be aware, most of you steal your software."
Although there is no commons alternative, there is Sourcehut - run by a team that is dedicated to the principles of free software. I should be giving them the money that I spend on GitHub.
At the very least, I should be giving them more money than I give GitHub... I will do that immediately.
More information about previous DMCA abuse here: https://news.ycombinator.com/item?id=29239594
Personally, I would not trust a company this unethical to certify anything. Their excuse seems to be "we're using an external service" but they chose that external service and are fully responsible for these takedowns in their name.