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Book Review: The World According to Star Wars

It was right after our selfie with Minion Captain America that we saw it. We were marching up and down the aisles, dodging empire storm troopers. Bright lights and backbone-rattling sounds shot out of the Nickelodeon and Star...more

Harry Potter And The Cursed Legal Update

It has been about a year since we published Harry Potter Lawsuits and Where to Find Them, my attempt at a comprehensive review of Harry Potter-related litigation. Why update the article now? Two reasons. First: The...more

The Pleads Of The Many: 50 Years of Star Trek Lawsuits

This year marks the fiftieth anniversary of the premiere of the original series of Star Trek, which first aired on NBC in September 1966. On July 22, this milestone will be marked in earnest when Paramount Pictures releases...more

Clark v. Dashner - USDC, D. New Mexico, June 30, 2016

District court dismisses author’s claims that film “The Maze Runner” and novel of same name infringed on copyright in his book The Maze, holding that similarities between works, including giant maze and robotic creatures, are...more

Does Copyright Protect Facts?

By Richard Stobbe A documentary film is, by its nature, a work of non-fiction. It expresses a set of facts, arranged and portrayed in a particular way. If a fictional novel is written, based on a documentary film, is...more

Viral Marketers Beware – In Alabama, Sales Tax Nexus Created for Out-of-State Bookseller Even Though In-State Teachers Not Acting...

After a quarter of a century, the school book nexus cases continue to proliferate, delight and mystify. The latest installment in the saga is from Alabama. Scholastic Book Clubs, Inc. 2931 v. State Of Alabama Department Of...more

Missed Connections: Seeking The Girl on the Train, Found Girl on a Train

The Wall Street Journal recently reported the spike in e-book sales of Alison Waines' two-year-old novel, Girl on a Train. The cause? Apparently, some customers thought they were purchasing The New York Times' best seller...more

MarkIt to MarketTM - November 2015

The November issue of Sterne Kessler's MarkIt to MarketTM newsletter discusses how authors can better protect titles of creative works in the U.S., outlines seven best practices for social media marketers seeking to quickly...more

Anne Frank’s “Diary of a Young Girl”: a Derivative Work with a Co-Author

On January 1, 2016, Adolf Hitler’s Mein Kampf and Joseph Goebbels’ diaries will both enter the public domain in most of Europe, where the term of protection ends 70 years after the death of a work’s author. One of the Nazi’s...more

Orwellian Enforcement of Orwellian Copyright?

George Orwell’s famous novel 1984 would describe this situation as “doubleplusungood.” Josh Hadley, an internet radio host and a self-described “harsh film critic with no sense of subtlety or tact,” recently met the ire...more

Tomaydo-Tomahhdo

Earlier this week, the Sixth Circuit ruled the “Tomaydo-Tomahhdo Recipe Book” was not creative enough to warrant a copyright. The case started when Rosemarie Carroll (and related companies) sued her ex-partner, Larry Moore...more

Second Circuit Holds That Google Book-Scanning Project Is Fair Use

Last Friday, the Second Circuit ruled that Google’s project to digitize and index millions of copyrighted books without permission from the copyright owners is a non-infringing fair use. Through its book-scanning projects,...more

The Second Circuit’s Apple Ebooks Opinion

The Second Circuit affirmed the district court and held, 2 to 1, that defendant Apple Inc. had violated Section 1 by masterminding the creation, organization and implementation of a conspiracy by five publishers of ebooks...more

Authors and Booksellers to Justice Department: Investigate Amazon

We recently wrote about the Second Circuit’s June 30, 2015 decision affirming Judge Denise Cote’s decision that Apple conspired with five publishing companies to raise the price of e-books....more

Connecticut Court Sinks Claim That History Of American Submarine Infringes Copyright

A recent decision from Judge Jeffrey Alker Meyer in the District of Connecticut may make waves in the world of nonfiction copyright. The decision throws out a copyright case that, among other things, emphasized two...more

Gerritsen v. Warner Bros. Entertainment Inc. - USDC, C.D. California, June 12, 201

District court dismisses breach of contract and breach of guaranty claims in first amended complaint against Warner Bros. based on Oscar-winning motion picture "Gravity," holding that plaintiff Terry Gerritsen, author of...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

UK: Freedom of Speech - Unnamed artist to appeal publishing injunction in the Supreme Court

On 9 December a well-known British performing artist was granted permission to take his case to the Supreme Court, where he will appeal the Court of Appeal’s decision in OPO v MLA & STL, reported here in October 2014....more

No Fair Use for Digital Excerpts

Cambridge University Press et al v. Patton et al. - The U.S. Court of Appeals for the 11th Circuit vacated the district court’s decision holding that digital excerpts of books from three academic publishers provided to...more

How the Kirtsaeng Decision Could Ruin the U.S. Branded Drug Industry

The Constitution gives Congress the power to grant copyright and patent protection in the same part of Article I, specifically in Section 8, Clause 8...more

ECJ Rules on Digitization of Library Collections

Technische Universität Darmstadt v. Eugen Ulmer KG - The European Court of Justice (ECJ) ruled on the meaning of an exception contained in the European Copyright Directive (2001/29/EC), permitting the provision of...more

“Textbook Dictionary” Definitions Not Fair Use, Says Mass. Federal Court

On September 26, 2014, the District of Massachusetts shot down a plan to develop a “textbook dictionary.” James Richards, inspired in part by the Autobiography of Malcolm X, developed a project to convert the dictionary from...more

VAT Alert: K Oy (C-219/13)

Under EU VAT law, EU Member States may, at their discretion, apply a reduced rate of VAT to books produced on "…all physical means of support". The term "all physical means of support" has generally been interpreted to...more

Entrepreneur Chris Yeh (@chrisyeh) Discusses Co-Authoring "The Alliance" on @HsuUntied [Video]

Today, my Special Guest is Chris Yeh, Co-Author (along with Reid Hoffman and Ben Casnocha) of "The Alliance," a New York Times best selling book on managing talent in the networked age from the employer's perspective. Chris...more

Update: District Court Finds First Amendment Does Not Protect Former Guidance Counselor’s Sexually-Explicit Book

The Northern District Court of Illinois found that Rich Township High School District 227 did not violate the free speech rights of former guidance counselor and girls’ basketball coach Bryan Craig when it dismissed him based...more

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