First Sale Doctrine Copyright

The First Sale Doctrine is rule of copyright law providing that an individual who knowingly purchases a copy of a copyrighted material has the right to do what they wish with that particular copy, i.e. sell,... more +
The First Sale Doctrine is rule of copyright law providing that an individual who knowingly purchases a copy of a copyrighted material has the right to do what they wish with that particular copy, i.e. sell, display or dispose of that copy. However, the First Sale Doctrine does not grant individual purchasers the right to make unauthorized reproductions of copyrighted material and consequently, the First Sale Doctrine cannot be used as a defense against claims of infringing reproductions.  less -
News & Analysis as of

Kirtsaeng v. John Wiley & Sons Inc. - U.S. Supreme Court, June 16, 2016

U.S. Supreme Court holds “objective reasonableness” of losing party’s position is important factor but not controlling one in considering award of attorneys’ fees under Copyright Act. Graduate student Supap Kirtsaeng, a...more

The Kirtsaeng Opinion: Supreme Court Guidance on Attorneys’ Fees Awards in Copyright Cases

Recently, in Kirtsaeng v. John Wiley & Sons, Inc., the U.S. Supreme Court provided substantial guidance in an unsettled area of law by holding that, when deciding whether to award attorneys’ fees under 17 U.S.C. §505, the...more

Supreme Court In Kirstaeng V Wiley: Objective Reasonableness Not Controlling For Attorney Fees

The case of Kirstaeng v. Wiley hit the headlines in 2013 when the Supreme Court held that importation and sale in the United States of books bought from the copyright owner in Thailand was not an infringement of copyright,...more

Supreme Court Injects Uncertainty Into Attorney’s Fee Awards in Copyright Cases

The day after it liberalized the standard for awarding enhanced damages in patent cases, a unanimous Supreme Court, in an opinion authored by Justice Kagan, substantially broadened lower courts’ discretion in granting...more

The Importance of Being Earnest and Objectively Reasonable

Kirtsaeng v. John Wiley & Sons, Inc. continues to make controlling copyright law, visiting the U.S. Supreme Court for the second time on an issue of great importance to copyright owners and litigants. This time, the issued...more

Objective Reasonableness Can Be Central to Fee-Shifting Analysis in Copyright Cases

In Kirtsaeng v. John Wiley & Sons, Inc., the Supreme Court clarified the test for awarding attorney’s fees when applying the Copyright Act’s discretionary fee-shifting provision, 17 U.S.C. § 505. The Court held that the...more

The Double-Edged Sword: Supreme Court Holds “Objective Reasonableness” Important But Not Dispositive in Copyright Act Fee Awards

It is a common misperception that a party will automatically recover its attorneys’ fees if it prevails in an action for copyright infringement. First, certain statutory requirements must be met in order to qualify for the...more

Hugh Jackman’s Conundrum: Can the Blockchain Revitalize the First Sale Doctrine Under Copyright Law?

Blockchain technology offers new possibilities for owners to sell digital copies of “pre-owned” content on secondary markets, as we’ve discussed in prior posts. But virtual flea markets – where an owner of a collection of...more

MoFo IP Newsletter - January 2016

Highlights of 2015 and What to Watch in 2016 in The United States - Commil USA, llC v. CiSCo SyStemS, inC. (Supreme Court, may 26, 2015). In May, the Supreme Court held that a good faith belief that an asserted patent...more

IP Law Tracker Docket Review

Each month, we review significant intellectual property decisions from the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Sixth Circuit and the U.S. District Courts for the Eastern District and Western District of Michigan. Below is the...more

John Wiley & Sons, Inc. v. Kirtsaeng - USCA, Second Circuit, May 27, 2015

Second Circuit affirms denial of defendant’s request for attorneys’ fees in copyright infringement dispute, finding plaintiff pursued objectively reasonable litigation position, having previously prevailed in both district...more

First Sale and Copyright Misuse Doctrines Available to Extinguish Rights to Products Purchased in Gray Market - Omega S.A. v....

In a short majority opinion, the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit concluded that once a copyright claimant conceded that it authorized a first sale of the watches in a foreign jurisdiction, the first sale doctrine...more

EU Copyright: No Resale of Digital Content Except for Software? How Does the European Court of Justice Decision on Exhaustion of...

The European Court of Justice (ECJ) has decided that the rule of exhaustion of the distribution right upon first sale (in the U.S. known as the “first sale” doctrine) does not apply to post first-sale alterations to the...more

Ninth Circuit (Mostly) Skirts the Issue of Copyright Misuse in Most Recent Omega v. Costco Decision

Sometimes a cigar is just a cigar, as the saying goes. However, things are not always as they appear, and sometimes events unfold in ways you would not anticipate. Such is the case with the Ninth Circuit decision in the...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

Adobe Systems Inc. v. Kornrumpf - USCA, Ninth Circuit, June 2, 2014

Adobe Systems Inc. v. Kornrumpf - USCA, Ninth Circuit, June 2, 2014: Ninth Circuit affirms grant of partial summary judgment in favor of Adobe Systems Inc., holding that first sale doctrine was not available as defense...more

Copyright Antitrust Claims Against Textbook Publishers Dismissed in Longstanding Gray Market Copyright Case

It is no secret that college textbooks are expensive, and the average student has little recourse when a professor assigns specific books and editions. Stuck between a rock and a hard place, over the years students have...more

Boston Copyright Round Table on Policy, Creativity and Innovation

The Department of Commerce is holding a round table at Harvard Law School on June 25, 2014 to discuss the Internet Policy Task Force’s Green Paper on Copyright Policy, Creativity and Innovation in the Digital Economy,...more

Supreme Court Clarifies the Parameters of the “First Sale” Doctrine in the Cross-Border Context

First Sale Doctrine - Under the Copyright Act, the exclusive right of a copyright owner “to distribute copies . . . of [a] copyrighted work,” 17 U.S.C. § 106(3) is limited, in part, by the “first sale” doctrine. The...more

Copyright exhaustion in the US: what the Kirtsaeng and ReDigi decisions tell us about the future of the first sale doctrine and...

The concept of copyright ‘exhaustion’, or the ‘first sale’ doctrine, refers to the principle that once a copyright owner places a copyrighted item in the stream of commerce by selling it, they have exhausted their exclusive...more

U.S. Supreme Court Upholds Importation and Re-Sale of Gray Market Goods Manufactured Abroad

On March 19, 2013, in a decision eagerly awaited by the entertainment bar,1 the United States Supreme Court, in Kirtsaeng v. John Wiley & Sons, ruled that, under the First Sale Doctrine, a person who buys lawfully made...more

TC's inside IP - Summer 2013: Supreme Court Establishes International Copyright Exhaustion - But What About Patents?

In a much anticipated case, the U.S. Supreme Court ruled on March 19, 2013 in Kirtsaeng v. John Wiley & Sons that the “first sale” or “exhaustion” doctrine of U.S. Copyright law, which allows resale of copyrighted materials,...more

Digital First Sale: Online Marketplace For "Used" Digital Music Strikes Discord With The Copyright Act

A recent decision out of New York illustrates the difficulty that courts in the digital era face in applying laws designed for a brick-and-mortar world. In Capitol Records, L.L.C. v. ReDigi Inc., the U.S. District Court for...more

Points & Authorities - Summer 2013: The Entertainment Issue

In This Issue: - It’s Always Something: The Repeated Assaults on Licensee Rights in Bankruptcy - Clearance: Start Early and Avoid the Clutter - New Faces - Points from the President - The...more

"Business Cases in the US Supreme Court"

The U.S. Supreme Court recently closed its 2012 term with its usual headline-grabbing flurry of June decisions. Several of those decisions, as well as many more that received less publicity, will affect business interests. In...more

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