NEW ORLEANS — A recent decision granting a motion in limine to exclude reference at trial to revenues or expenses generated overseas by several copyright infringement defendants, including Universal Studios LLC, won’t be revisited, a federal judge in Louisiana ruled May 7.
PHOENIX — Twelve stories in a manuscript about frontiersman Jim Hathaway are not substantially similar to “Crossers: A Novel,” a fictional book about life along the Mexican border, a federal magistrate judge in Arizona ruled May 10.
NASHVILLE, Tenn. — In a May 4 holding, a federal judge in Tennessee ruled that Isaac “Don” Everly “plainly and expressly” repudiated his brother Phil Everly’s status as a co-author of the song “Cathy’s Clown” more than three years before Phil Everly’s successors sought a declaration of co-authorship.
BROOKLYN, N.Y. — The owners of two businesses associated with the “Mighty Bliss” massage device won dismissal of direct patent infringement allegations on April 29, but in the same ruling, a New York federal judge found that a related claim that the duo violated copyrights and trademarks will proceed.
LOS ANGELES — A federal judge in California on April 29 granted an ex parte motion for a temporary restraining order (TRO), barring various defendants from manufacturing or selling a knockoff reversible octopus plushie.
NEW YORK — Amazon.com Inc. was hit with a copyright infringement lawsuit in New York federal court on April 28 by a California woman who claims that the online retailer sold goods bearing a design that is almost identical to her “Whatever Forever” design that she has featured on various items for years.
SAN FRANCISCO — A few days after amici curiae supporting pop star Katy Perry in a copyright infringement lawsuit filed paper copies of their briefs in the Ninth Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals, a rapper and his collaborators who initiated the copyright infringement suit filed audio CDs containing the allegedly infringed work on April 27 at the appeals court’s direction.
SAN JOSE, Calif. — In a lawsuit over YouTube LLC’s refusal to let a songwriter use a copyright infringement tool, the video platform operator on April 21 filed a brief objecting to the plaintiff’s discovery requests that it says seek vast amounts of irrelevant information about millions of other users’ acts of infringement that are not germane to the claims in the present case.
CHICAGO — The Seventh Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals on April 23 declined a copyright owner’s call to overrule existing precedent on the doctrines of merger and scènes à faire, clarifying that in cases where a copyright provides only thin protection, an infringement claim “may move forward only if the plaintiff’s copyrighted design and the allegedly infringing design are virtually identical.”
NASHVILLE, Tenn. — Allegations by the copyright management firms for rapper Marshall Mathers, who performs as Eminem, that a music licensing agency vicariously infringed by making Eminem’s works available on a music streaming service without first obtaining a valid license were dismissed April 22 by a federal judge in Tennessee.
CHICAGO — A federal judge in Illinois on April 21 found that although allegations of copyright infringement leveled over forwarded emails present a “close question,” the dispute should nonetheless proceed.
NEW YORK — A May 5 hearing date was acknowledged on April 14 by the parties in a copyright infringement appeal, in which Netflix Inc., Apple Inc. and Amazon.com Inc. ask the Second Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals to affirm a trial court’s finding that the inclusion of an eight-second clip of a children’s song in a burlesque documentary that the three companies streamed constituted fair use.
NEW YORK — A federal judge in New York on April 1 ordered the brother of the late, legendary guitarist Jimi Hendrix to pay $100 per day as a penalty for continued noncompliance with court orders stemming from a copyright and trademark dispute.
LAS VEGAS — In an April 12 ruling, a federal judge in Nevada stood by his recent decision to award a copyright infringement defendant $193,398.70 in attorney fees, deeming the plaintiff’s claims objectively unreasonable.
NEW YORK — Allegations by the author of a copyrighted article about possible extraterrestrial life on Venus that an academic journal infringed when it initially refused to remove the article from the journal’s website were dismissed April 12 by a federal judge in New York.
BOSTON — The First Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals on April 12 upheld a Massachusetts federal judge’s decision to dismiss allegations of copyright infringement leveled by the creator of a brochure against her former client.
DENVER — An internet service provider (ISP) that has been accused of secondary copyright infringement over its subscribers’ file-sharing activities filed a motion in Colorado federal court on April 9, seeking to compel the Recording Industry Association of America (RIAA) to produce communications with an investigations firm it hired on behalf of the plaintiff record labels to uncover evidence of infringement.
NEW YORK — A request by two defendants for a declaration that they did not infringe the “Slap Chop” trademark or copyrighted product packaging with the sale of various food preparation products will proceed, a New York federal judge ruled April 5.
NEW YORK — Display by the Metropolitan Museum of Art of a photograph of the late guitarist Eddie Van Halen playing his “Frankenstein” guitar was not actionable copyright infringement because the museum’s display “transformed the Photo by foregrounding the instrument rather than the performer,” the Second Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals said April 2.
WASHINGTON, D.C. — In a 6-2 divided opinion, the U.S. Supreme Court on April 5 ruled that a decision by Google LLC to take “only what was needed” when copying code from the Java application programming interface (API) in order to “allow users to put their accrued talents to work in a new and transformative program” qualified as a fair use, rendering any infringement by the software giant nonactionable.