Art, Entertainment & Sports Civil Procedure

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News & Analysis as of

Ninth Circuit Reverses Order Striking Class Allegations in Microsoft Xbox Case

The Ninth Circuit reversed an order striking class allegations against Microsoft reasoning that the Washington district court misapplied its precedent and thereby abused its discretion. Plaintiffs alleged that a design defect...more

When Does an Email Form a Legally-Binding Agreement? Ask the Canucks.

A recent decision from the British Columbia Court of Appeal provides an important reminder when communicating by email regarding the negotiation of the terms of an agreement: Just because you haven’t signed a contract,...more

Digital Music Provider Grooveshark Dismantled in Major Victory for Music Recording Industry

On April 30, 2015, digital music provider Grooveshark—owned by Escape Media Group, Inc. ("Escape")—agreed to permanently shut down its controversial music streaming website following several years of litigation with major...more

Upper Tribunal Decision in Samarkand and Proteus

The long-awaited Upper Tribunal Decision in the Samarkand and Proteus case has been published. The case relates to statutory sale and leaseback partnerships with partners claiming losses under the film acquisition relief...more

Contracts Can Impose High Liquidated Damages in Some Cases

A few volumes ago, we wrote about the scope and enforceability of liquidated damages provisions in contracts, indicating that these provisions may only be enforced by courts where (i) the damages amount is not so unreasonably...more

Levitin v. Sony Music Entertainment - USDC, Southern District of New York, April 22, 2015

In copyright infringement action arising out of international release of song “Timber” by performing artists Pitbull and Kesha, district court dismisses claims against Sony Music Entertainment, which obtained license from...more

Katy Perry Faces Choppy Waters: Left Shark Trademark Refused!

Katy Perry runs into trademark trouble in her attempt to register a “Left shark” design mark. Here’s what happened and what you can do to avoid a similar fate. To the merriment of Left Shark fans everywhere, Katy Perry...more

UK: Use of image taken from social media breaches UK media privacy rules

By Duncan Calow and Verity Young The UK Independent Press Standards Organisation has upheld a complaint against a newspaper after it published an image taken from social media without consent picturing a man who had been...more

Slanted Perspective?

What’s the first thing that comes to mind when I refer you to “the Slants?” Is it a non-perpendicular or horizontal line? Is it the news coverage of MSNBC or Fox News? Is it a derogatory term for Asians? Or, perhaps its...more

Wilson v. The Walt Disney Company - USDC, N.D. California, April 16, 2015

In copyright infringement action concerning trailer for Disney’s blockbuster film Frozen court denied both parties’ motions for summary judgment, finding that plaintiff established genuine factual dispute as to Disney’s...more

All Bets Are Off: Kentucky Downs Trade Secrets Case Presents Novel Question Under Kentucky’s Uniform Trade Secrets Act

Earlier this month, AmTote International, Inc. sued the famed Kentucky Downs racetrack, three high-ranking Kentucky Downs employees, and Encore Gaming, LLC in federal court alleging misappropriation of trade secrets related...more

Morawski v. Lightstorm Entertainment, Inc. - USCA, Ninth Circuit, April 15, 2015

Morawski v. Lightstorm Entertainment, Inc. - USCA, Ninth Circuit, April 15, 2015 - Ninth Circuit panel summarily affirms award of summary judgment in favor of James Cameron and Lightstorm Entertainment, rejecting...more

Advertising Law - April 2015 #2

Red Light! Cab Companies Claim Uber Falsely Claims to Be Safer Service: What’s safer—riding in a cab or riding in an Uber car? - A new false advertising lawsuit raised that question when a coalition of 19...more

High Net Worth Family Tax Report, Vol. 10, No. 1

Recent Case Illustrates Importance of Keeping Legal Entities in Good Standing - A recent United States Tax Court case illustrates the importance of keeping legal entities in good standing. In Medical Weight Control...more

Second Circuit to Weigh In on Copyright Owner-Digital Broadcaster Dispute Over Pre-1972 Sound Recording Performance Rights

On April 15, 2015, the Second Circuit granted digital broadcaster Sirius XM Radio, Inc.'s (Sirius XM) petition for interlocutory appeal of U.S. District Judge Colleen McMahon's November 2014 ruling that New York state law...more

WWE Faces Wrongful Death Suit for Alleged Concealment of Risks Associated with Concussions

Memphis, Tennessee is the most recent arena in which the WWE is defending itself against concussion-related claims brought by former professional wrestlers. On February 18, 2015, the widow of deceased wrestler Nelson Lee...more

Penalty! The California Court of Appeal Calls Foul on the NCAA’s Attempt to Seal Records of the USC/Reggie Bush Investigation

In a significant victory for open court filings, the California Court of Appeal rejected an effort by the National Collegiate Athletic Association (“NCAA”) to seal 400 pages of documents in a dispute between the NCAA and a...more

Design meets 3D Printing!

This week in Milan everything is about design. Recently, 3D printing generated a lot of interest in the design industry, allowing any user to manufacture small batches of identical copies of an object at a low cost....more

Screenwriter SLAPPs Down Libel-in-Fiction Claim

In a victory for all authors of fiction, a screenwriter of the film “What Maisie Knew” has successfully defended a lawsuit that sought to hold him liable for defamation based on the portrayal of a character drawn from an 1897...more

The Dark Knight, Black Panthers, Ghosts and Ginger Rogers: Increasing Protection for Use of Trademarks in Promotions for...

Content creators of all stripes strive for realism in their depictions of the world. This is for good reason – media is more effective, and more immersive, when viewers recognize it as a reflection of the real world. Despite...more

Game Over: Plain and Ordinary Construction Results in Summary Judgment

Claim Construction Order and Order Granting Summary Judgment, Segan LLC v. Zynga Inc., 14-cv-01315 (Judge Vince Chhabria) - It is ordinary in patent cases for the patentee to ascribe “plain and ordinary” meaning to...more

Napoleon Pictures Limited v. Fox - Searchlight Pictures, Inc. California Court of Appeal, 2d Appellate Div., April 9, 2015

Napoleon Pictures Limited v. Fox - Searchlight Pictures, Inc. California Court of Appeal, 2d Appellate Div., April 9, 2015 - Appellate court affirms trial court’s judgment in dispute over royalties for video sales for...more

Britto v. Apple: Utilizing the IP Kitchen Sink

Can an artist’s particular style of art constitute both copyrightable expression and trade dress? Brazilian artist Romero Britto has filed suit against two artists known as “Craig & Karl” for copyright infringement —...more

The UNC Former Student-Athletes’ Litigation: The Defense Enters the Field

We wrote last month about the lawsuit filed against the University of North Carolina and the NCAA by former UNC student-athletes Rashanda McCants and Devon Ramsey....more

Even In The UK, Think Twice Before Using Celebrity Endorsements

A recent legal case in the UK between singer Rhianna and fashion retailer Topshop has highlighted differences between publicity rights in the UK and some US jurisdictions. Rhianna sued Topshop for its sale of a t-shirt...more

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