Latest Publications

Share:

“River Crabbing” Chinese Search Engine Battles for Freedom of Expression in the U.S.

In 2004, the Chinese Communist Party announced a new national goal of building a “Harmonious Society.” Since then, this goal has often been cited by the Chinese government as a reason for Internet censorship. In Mandarin,...more

4/4/2014 - China First Amendment Free Speech Internet Search Engines

Who Owns Ellen DeGeneres’ Now-Famous Academy Awards “Selfie”?

In 2012, law professor Justin Hughes published an article in the Harvard Journal of Law & Technology that raised serious questions about how courts have analyzed the Copyright Act’s originality requirement as it applies to...more

3/12/2014 - Copyright Ellen DeGeneres Photographs Twitter

Fun with Facebook

In the last few months, numerous cases involving Facebook have resulted in amusing rulings that we would be remiss to ignore. On deck for this blog post we have three good ones...more

2/20/2014 - Facebook Young Lawyers

Federal Judge Declares Sherlock Holmes Characters in Public Domain. Sort of.

Comedian Dmitri Martin has a great joke about the expression “sort of.” Although normally a fairly meaningless expression, saying “sort of” after certain things suddenly becomes very important. Such as after the phrase “I...more

1/10/2014 - Copyright Incremental Expression Rule Public Domain Sherlock Holmes

Leggo My Likeness Part V: Grand Theft Right of Publicity?

This year, several important video game lawsuits helped clarify the parameters for using a celebrity’s likeness in video games. Generally speaking, courts have found that, unless you get permission, you can’t put a celebrity...more

12/12/2013 - Celebrities First Amendment Grand Theft Auto Lindsay Lohan Right of Publicity Video Games

U.S. Supreme Court Leaves Important Fair Use Ruling Undisturbed

More than a century ago, Justice Oliver Wendell Holmes warned that it would be dangerous for people trained only in the law to decide the worth of a work of art—at least outside of the narrowest and most obvious limits. As...more

11/15/2013 - Copyright Fair Use SCOTUS

Electronic Arts Fumbles in Lawsuit Brought by College Athletes (again)

College sports is big business. Student-athletes generate truckloads of cash for their schools, but are prohibited by NCAA rules from sharing in the haul. In fact, if the student-athlete learns that someone is commercially...more

8/5/2013 - Appropriation Athletes Electronic Arts NCAA

Requiem for a Ridiculous Lawsuit

Last month, I wrote about some notable examples of film and television producers being sued or threatened for using other peoples’ creations without permission. Examples included Emerson Electric suing NBC after Claire from...more

7/25/2013 - Brand Copyright Copyright Infringement Entertainment Industry Frivolous Lawsuits

Happy Birthday…You’re Being Sued!

Have you ever noticed how people rarely sing “Happy Birthday to You” in movies and television? Instead, people usually sing “For He’s a Jolly Good Fellow,” even though no one actually sings that song in real life. ...more

6/20/2013 - Copyright Fair Use Infringement Motion Picture Industry Music Public Domain Television Programming Trademarks Useful Article

Leggo My Likeness, Part Four

There are so many fun things you can do with celebrities. In addition to the traditional things like writing books about them, you can also use their catchphrases to make greeting cards; make movies about them using puppets;...more

5/29/2013 - Copyright First Amendment Football Misappropriation NCAA Transformativeness Video Games

Bill Maher Prevails Over Donald Trump Lawsuit By Sitting and Waiting for the Donald to Figure Out to Drop It Himself

In February, I wrote about a particularly fake-haired boneheaded lawsuit that Donald Trump brought against comedian Bill Maher. As you may recall, Trump accused Maher of breach of contract based on a joke that Maher had made...more

4/9/2013 - Bill Maher Breach of Contract Dismissals Donald Trump Frivolous Lawsuits Malicious Prosecution

Donald Trump Sues Bill Maher for Monkeying Around on Late-Night Talk Show

Here at Law Law Land, there are a few pearls of wisdom we like to repeat — perhaps to a fault — just because they are so helpful and right. Copyright law doesn’t protect ideas, only the expressions of ideas. Being legally...more

2/21/2013 - Anti-SLAPP Bill Maher Donald Trump Offers Parody Rewards The Tonight Show

The Lakers Beat the Who?

Seattle sports fans recently rejoiced when the Maloof family announced that they have (finally) agreed to sell their stake in the Sacramento Kings to a Seattle-based investment group that (spoiler alert) intends to move the...more

1/28/2013 - NBA Public Financing Public Projects

You Can’t Sue Your Favorite Team for Stinking, But Can You Sue Them for Intentionally Stinking?

My wife is very excited about tonight’s Laker game. Not because she is a Laker fan. Indeed, any actual Laker fan (like me) knows that now is a decidedly bad time to be a Laker fan. True, during the last off-season we...more

1/16/2013

BaZynga!

Free-to-play games are all the rage these days. Many people while away their days playing Angry Birds, or Words with Friends before going home to watch Monday Night Football. Nerds — and, increasingly, “normal people” — do...more

12/26/2012 - Competition Cross-Complaints Free-to-Play Games Kixeye Misappropriation Non-Compete Agreements Protective Orders Trade Secrets Zynga

Magic Turkey Lawsuits

There is a lot to be thankful for in Los Angeles this Thanksgiving. As I’m sure we can all agree, near the top of the list is the Lakers’ recent acquisition of superstars Dwight Howard and Steve Nash, as well as team USA...more

11/26/2012 - Age Discrimination

16 Results
|
View per page
Page: of 1