Art, Entertainment & Sports Intellectual Property

Read need-to-know updates, commentary, and analysis on Art, Entertainment & Sports issues written by leading professionals.
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DMCA Advice from the Department of Commerce

The Digital Millennium Copyright Act of 1998 was created to protect copyright owners from infringement of their works (such as photos, documents, music files, and videos) over the Internet. Amongst other things, the DMCA...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

Music Artists take Charge - The Fair Play Fair Pay Act

On April 13th, four Congressional members introduced the Fair Play, Fair Pay Act of 2015 (FPFPA), which requires traditional radio stations to pay song writers and performers royalties – just as their internet and satellite...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

Balancing the Budget …and Balancing Copyright

The Government of Canada’s Budget Plan for 2015 proposes various measures within the expected areas of tax relief, job creation and economic growth measures.  It also includes a very unexpected proposal to extend the...more

Parody Or Rip Off?: Don Henley Won’t Take It Easy

Former Eagles drummer and co-lead singer Don Henley has just agreed to settle a lawsuit that he filed against Duluth Trading Co., the clothing retailer best known for its goofy cartoon ads on television. ...more

Chicago Cubs Make News Again with Trademark Lawsuit

The Chicago Cubs have been in the news lately relating to its legal battle over its new advertising signs with the surrounding rooftop bars and investors. However, the Chicago Cubs have also initiated a brand new lawsuit...more

DISHing it out with the Fox: How the Second Screen Has Survived Fox’s Copyright Attacks

January’s Central District of California ruling on Fox Broadcasting’s claims against the DISH Network clarifies some of the ambiguity surrounding second screen cross-device programming distribution and copyright infringement....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

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

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

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

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

Court Sacks Photographers’ Antitrust Claims Against the NFL and its Member Teams

Allegations of conspiracy to restrain trade and exclusive dealing may read like textbook antitrust claims, but if the allegations are made by a plaintiff who is not an “efficient enforcer” of the antitrust laws, the complaint...more

Move Over Vanna White, Here Comes Marion Barry’s Kidney

In 2008, former Mayor of Washington, D.C., and then council member Marion Barry became ill with a kidney disease. To survive the illness, Mr. Barry required a kidney transplant, and one of his friends, Ms. Kim Dickens, came...more

Adjmi v. DLT Entertainment LTD. - USDC, S.D. New York, March 31, 2015

Adjmi v. DLT Entertainment LTD. - USDC, S.D. New York, March 31, 2015 - In Depth: District court grants declaratory judgment to playwright, holding that play’s dark and “nightmarish” theatrical take on iconic...more

Copyright Co-Owner’s Ability to Grant an Exclusive Right to a Third Party - Corbello v. DeVito

Revisiting the issue of a copyright co-owner’s right to grant an exclusive right to a third party, the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit clarified its prior ruling in Sybersound v. UAV, and explained that a...more

Copycat Characters and the Selective Enforcement of IP Rights

Spring is here with summer just around the corner. While many are preparing for barbeques and boating, others are finalizing plans and perhaps costumes in preparation for Comic-Con (Comic Book Convention) season....more

Belgium: Even a world famous painter needs to respect copyrights

The well-known Belgian painter Luc Tuymans has based his painting ‘A Belgian Politician’ on a picture of the Belgian right-wing politician Jean-Marie Dedecker that was made by the professional photographer Katrijn Van Giel,...more

A Modern Game of Hide and Go Seek? Some Lessons Learned Following Sony and Other Widely-Publicized Data Breaches

While the recent hack of Sony was prominent news because of the celebrity ties and potential geo-political implications, other prominent cyber-attacks over the last few months are enough to give any company pause. The January...more

Australia: Dallas Buyers Club LLC obtains customer identities from ISPs in landmark piracy ruling

On Tuesday 7 April 2015, a single Federal Court Judge ordered six internet service providers (ISPs) to hand over the names and identities corresponding to approximately 4,700 unique IP addresses, which have allegedly...more

Three’s Company But Two’s a Crowd: Theatrical Parodies of Copyrighted Works

In our Oscar litigation post a few weeks ago, we made a passing reference to MGM v. Showcase Atlanta Coop. Prods., Inc., 479 F.Supp. 351 (N.D. Ga. 1979). In that case, the Northern District Court of Georgia held that the play...more

It Ain’t Over ‘Til It’s Over: 6th Circuit Confirms That Post-Trial Motions Toll The Deadline To File Attorneys’ Fees Motions And...

In Slep-Tone Entertainment Corp. v. Karaoke Kandy Store, et al., No. 14-3117 (6th Cir. April 6, 2015), the Sixth Circuit confirmed that post-trial motions toll the deadline for filing motions for attorneys’ fees under Rule...more

Jury Sees a Clear Line – Pharrell, Thicke Crossed It

Pharrell Williams, famous for singing about how “Happy” he is, might be changing his tune these days. On March 10, a federal jury found him and fellow pop star Robin Thicke liable for copying Marvin Gaye’s popular song “Got...more

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