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Art, Entertainment & Sports Intellectual Property

Read need-to-know updates, commentary, and analysis on Art, Entertainment & Sports issues written by leading professionals.

Living it Up At the HOTEL CALIFORNIA

by BakerHostetler on

Legendary rock band Eagles, Ltd. (The Eagles), filed suit on May 1 against the owners of the Hotel California Baja LLC in the U.S. District Court for the Central District of California. The suit alleges trademark infringement...more

The Kardashians Can’t Keep up with Copyright Law

Khloe Kardashian is the latest Kardashian to find herself in court over her activities on social media. The youngest Kardashian sister was sued by a photographer for copyright infringement in Xposure Photos UK Ltd v Khloe...more

No Laughing Matter – O’Brien Forced To Stand Trial In Stolen Jokes Lawsuit

by Fox Rothschild LLP on

TBS comedian and late-night talk show host Conan O’Brien was given good reason to frown Monday when a federal judge denied summary judgment as to three of the five jokes comedy writer Alex Kaseberg claims O’Brien and his...more

Modified set-top boxes and copyright infringement – where do we stand?

by Dentons on

In an important decision for rights holders everywhere, on 26 April 2017, the European Court of Justice (CJEU) ruled that the sale of multimedia devices that have been modified to allow end users to stream pirated content is...more

No Charges by ISP for Performing its Duties Under the Notice and Notice Regime

by Bennett Jones LLP on

Unlike many countries which provide an effective "notice and take down" remedy for copyright owners whose works are wrongly posted on Internet sites, Canada has implemented a "notice and notice" regime. In Voltage Pictures,...more

The Abstract Swing: Major League Problems In Patent Law

Professional baseball was in a crisis, at least through the eyes of the major market teams. It all started with a rather unremarkable second baseman, Aliceandro, who played for the San Jose Programmers. During the last...more

Have You Been Duped?

In the fashion and beauty world, the copying of higher-priced brands is widespread. While in fashion, the term for copies of designer products is “knockoffs,” in beauty, the term is “dupes.” Whether it is a colloquial use of...more

Important Open Source Ruling Confirms Enforceability of Dual-Licensing and Breach of GPL for Failing to Distribute Source Code

A recent federal district court decision denied a motion to dismiss a complaint brought by Artifex Software Inc. (“Artifex”) for breach of contract and copyright infringement claims against Defendant Hancom, Inc. based on...more

No Compulsory License for Internet Retransmissions of Broadcast TV

by McDermott Will & Emery on

Reversing the district court’s partial grant of summary judgment in favor of an internet streaming service, the US Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit relied on the US Copyright Office’s interpretation of § 111 of the...more

You’ve Gotta Keep ‘Em Separated

by Foley & Lardner LLP on

The US Supreme Court’s ruling in Star Athletica v Varsity Brands provides a path to copyrightability for pictorial or graphical elements of clothing designs and useful articles. Laura Ganoza and Julie McGinnis of Foley &...more

Give Me an E: Cheerleading Uniform Designs Eligible for Copyright Protection

by McDermott Will & Emery on

In a 6–2 decision authored by Justice Thomas, the Supreme Court of the United States provided guidance as to whether aesthetic designs of a cheerleading uniform, such as stripes, chevrons, zigzags and color blocks, are...more

MLB: A Monopoly on “Baseball”?

The weather is finally getting warmer up here in Minnesota and it’s a great time to watch baseball, as I’ve been doing frequently of late. It’s been fun watching my home team, the Twins, enjoy a strong start to the season...more

Entertainment Litigation Update - May 2017

Ninth Circuit Confirms That “Volitional Conduct” Is Still Required for Direct Copyright Infringement Post-Aereo. Earlier this year, in Perfect 10, Inc. v. Giganews, Inc., 847 F.3d 657 (2017), the Ninth Circuit re-affirmed...more

Third verse same as the first - Will Richard Prince’s transformation defense work yet again?

by Thompson Coburn LLP on

Take a copyrighted photograph of Sonic Youth bass player Kim Gordon, crop it, and add an Instagram border and a few words of text and emojis. Have you “transformed” it sufficiently to avoid copyright infringement? And is it...more

The Eagles Say Suite Dreams To Hotel California In Trademark Infringement Suit

by Fox Rothschild LLP on

The iconic American rock band The Eagles released its platinum album “Hotel California” in December of 1976. It sold more than 32 million copies worldwide and its title track “Hotel California” achieved legendary status....more

Studios Fire Back: Fictional Publication Depicted in a Movie is Privileged Expressive Use

Following up a previous post about the February 2017 lawsuit filed by the Sporting Times against Orion Pictures for depicting a fictional magazine of the same title in a movie about the life of Bill “Spaceman” Lee, MGM has...more

Fair Use is Not Always Fair

Photographer TC Reiner sued Watkins Institute and its student Ryon Nishimori for copyright infringement when Nishimori incorporated one of Reiner’s copyrighted photographs into a mock advertisement for a classroom assignment...more

Fearless Girl Must Stay

by Dorsey & Whitney LLP on

In honor of International Women’s Day, State Street Global Advisors installed a statue of a Fearless Girl standing in front of Wall Street’s Charging Bull. The statue by artist Kristen Visbal was an overnight sensation,...more

Prepare for Canada Day by Reviewing Your Pending Industrial Design Applications

by Smart & Biggar on

July 1, 2017, is Canada’s 150th birthday. But it is also the deadline for taking certain actions in respect of pending Canadian design applications. As previously reported, on January 16, 2017, the Canadian Industrial...more

Cleveland Brewery’s Use of His Likeness Not Very Well Liked by Lebron James

by Miles & Stockbridge P.C. on

Yesterday, it was reported by the Bleacher Report that Cleveland Cavaliers basketball star, Lebron James, was displeased with the fact that a brewer located in the Cleveland, Ohio area, Great Lakes Brewing Company may have...more

Visual Artists Rights Act Review

In 1990 Congress added the Visual Artists Rights Act (VARA) to the Copyright Law as new Section 106A. Section 106A provides: 106A Rights of certain authors to attribution and integrity - (a) Rights of Attribution...more

Navigating the Lifecycle of an Eponymous Brand (Part 3)

In this three-part series, we identified three distinct seasons in the lifecycle of an eponymous brand: (1) Choosing the Brand, (2) Commercializing the Brand, and (3) Legacy of the Brand. In Part 1, we discussed what is at...more

Welcome to the (Courthouse) Hotel California

While it may be a lovely place, the Eagles are not too keen on a small hotel in Todos Santos, Mexico and its use of the name HOTEL CALIFORNIA. After opposing the hotel’s trademark application last January, the band earlier...more

MarkIt to Market® | April 2017

The April 2017 issue of Sterne Kessler's MarkIt to Market® discusses navigating the lifecycle of an eponymous brand and lists the new gTLD Sunrise periods. Please see full newsletter below for more information....more

This RMLC/GMR Fight Is No Joke

Originally published in Radio Ink - January 12, 2017. Most radio stations have received emails in the past several weeks from both the Radio Music License Committee (RMLC) and Global Music Rights (GMR) regarding an...more

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