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News & Analysis as of

Netflix Agrees To Add Audio Description to Many of Its Shows and DVD Rentals

Seyfarth Synopsis:  In what has been deemed the first of its kind, Netflix has entered into an agreement with the American Council of the Blind, the Massachusetts-based Bay State Council of the Blind, and a blind individual,...more

The Dancing Baby Returns: Computer Algorithms, Good Faith and Fair Use

In “The Case of Prince, a Dancing Baby and the DMCA Takedown Notice,” we discussed the potential impact of the Ninth Circuit decision in Lenz v. Universal Music Corp., 801 F.3d 1126 (2015), a.k.a. the “dancing baby case,” in...more

Hulk-Sized Damages in Sex Tape Privacy and Publicity Case

In 2006, Terry Gene Bollea, better known as “Hulk Hogan,” had sex with his best friend’s wife, Heather Clem. Apparently unbeknownst to either of them, his best friend Todd Alan Clem, now legally known as “Bubba the Love...more

The Law Behind the Hulk Hogan $140 Million Verdict Against Gawker

A few days ago, a jury in Florida awarded Hulk Hogan (real name Terry Bollea)  $140 million because Gawker posted a leaked sex video of the former wrestler. Rather than focus on the lurid details (which you can Google), let’s...more

Ninth Circuit Retcons Its “Dancing Baby” Fair Use Decision and Creates More Confusion

Apparently, George Lucas is not the only party in California who can edit his own work after release in order to change aspects he does not like. While perhaps not as culturally significant as changing Star Wars: A New Hope...more

"Dancing Baby" Decision Affects DMCA Notice-and-Takedown Provision

Ninth Circuit Amends "Dancing Baby" Decision: Lenz v. Universal Music Corp., Nos. 13-16106, 13-16107 (9th Cir. Mar. 17, 2016) - On March 17, 2016, the Ninth Circuit amended its prior opinion in the famed "Dancing Baby"...more

Ninth Circuit Does a Two-Step in “Dancing Baby” Case

While many were focused on “The Big Dance” on March 17, 2016, the 9th Circuit Court of Appeals did some “dancing” of its own. The Court issued a revised opinion in Lenz v. Universal and thereby amended what has been referred...more

Patient Zero – Public Knowledge Seeks FCC Review of A New “Zero Rated” Service

Consumer advocacy group Public Knowledge recently filed a petition with the Federal Communications Commission (“FCC”) challenging a multi-system operator’s (“MSO”) online video service as violative of conditions imposed as...more

Copyright Office Issues NOI Regarding DMCA, Seeks Comment on “Repeat Infringers”

On Dec. 31, 2015, the U.S. Copyright Office published a Notice of Inquiry seeking to “evaluate the impact and effectiveness of the DMCA safe harbor provisions” found at 17 U.S.C. § 512. Comments in response to the Notice of...more

Manatt Digital Media - February 2016

In this newsletter, we highlight how strategic acquisition and investment can best be leveraged for organizational growth. We also discuss a recent example in the case of IBM's purchase of live streaming service Ustream, and...more

Balancing Copyright Owners' Rights With ISP Immunities

When an online user violates copyright law, the copyright owner will frequently turn to the user's internet service provider (ISP) for relief. The Digital Millennium Copyright Act (DMCA) includes a safe harbor provision that...more

JDB 087: The Texas Law Hawk – Interview with Attorney Bryan Wilson

Two videos. Nearly two million views. To say that attorney Bryan Wilson’s videos have gone viral is an understatement. In fact, I would be surprised if every lawyer video ever made would have a combined total of two million...more

Google Gives Fair Use on YouTube a Fighting Chance

Last month, Google announced a groundbreaking policy that may help shift the balance of power between copyright claimants and those who upload YouTube videos that may be covered by fair use. According to Google’s Public...more

2015 Digital Media Year in Review

Yes, it's that time of year again. Nostalgia and reflection time—taking a look at this past year in digital media. Nearly one year ago, Manatt Digital Media CEO Peter Csathy made several predictions for TechCrunch in an...more

YouTube to Take a Stand for Fair Use

As we have written elsewhere on this blog, the Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals recently held that copyright owners must consider fair use before submitting takedown requests to internet service providers under the Digital...more

Building a Successful Social Media App: Four Lessons Learned from Snapchat

Since its launch in 2011, the social media platform Snapchat has generated its share of negative press, with most of that press in some way related to the very characteristic that, at least initially, helped Snapchat to...more

Establishing the Boundaries of the OCILLA Safe Harbor

As user-generated content explodes over the Internet, intellectual property disputes over posting or uploading such content without the owner’s consent continue to escalate. As we touched on in a recent post, social media...more

Chicago Mayor’s Tax-Heavy Budget Passes: Lease and Amusement Tax Implications

Last week the Chicago City Council approved Mayor Rahm Emanuel’s 2016 revenue ordinance as part of his tax-laden budget proposal. The revenue ordinance included noteworthy changes to the personal property lease transaction...more

Social Media Compliance Policies: Your Company Needs One

Use of social media is ubiquitous in today's society. This is astounding when you think back to 2004 and realize that social media did not exist then. Fast forward ten years and by September 2014, 58% of all American adults...more

Court Provides Fair Use Guidance On YouTuber’s Use of Viral Video

This copyright case pitted two big YouTube content brands against each other over issues of fair use. On one side is Equals Three, LLC, a YouTube content studio and channel created and owned by Ray William Johnson, an early...more

Advertising Law - October 2015 #4

Eleventh Circuit Rejects Application of VPPA to Free App - The latest decision interpreting the application of the Video Privacy Protection Act in the context of twenty-first century technology provides positive news for...more

Equals Three, LLC v. Jukin Media, Inc. - USDC, C.D. California, October 13, 2015

In copyright infringement action involving unlicensed use of humorous “viral videos,” district court denies copyright owner’s motion for partial summary judgment, concluding that all but one of allegedly infringing programs...more

Australian manufacturer is successful in asserting patent in China

Lucas Mills made media headlines for its win of 2 million yuan ($430,000) against a Chinese company who infringed Lucas’ patent for its flagship product, a portable sawmill. The sawmill allows logs to be cut into milled...more

Important Circuit Court Ruling Limits Scope of VPPA Liability

The Eleventh Circuit issued a notable ruling this week limiting a mobile app’s liability under the Video Privacy Protection Act (VPPA), 18 U.S.C. § 2710, a law enacted in 1988 to preserve “consumer” personal privacy with...more

Manatt Digital Media - September 2015

In this month's newsletter we highlight some of the latest activities in the digital video space. Social media, mobile and over-the-top (OTT) viewing continue to make waves in the media landscape, creating new opportunities...more

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