News & Analysis as of

Boyd Lighting's Steampunk Sconce Gets Stock Photo Archive Steamed

On December 16, 2014, Lived In Images, Inc. (d/b/a Hometica) sued Boyd Lighting Fixture Company for copyright infringement in the United States District Court for the Northern District of California (San Francisco Division)...more

Rockin’ Around The ©hristmas Tree

This past weekend, my wife and I were fortunate enough to take in the sights and sounds of NYC. Included on our stops was the world famous Rockefeller Center Christmas tree. The tree was lit on December 3. Despite the...more

Panoramic Stock Images, Ltd v. McGraw-Hill Global Education Holdings, LLC - USDC, N.D. Illinois, November 25, 2014

Panoramic Stock Images, Ltd v. McGraw-Hill Global Education Holdings, LLC - USDC, N.D. Illinois, November 25, 2014: District court denies textbook publisher McGraw-Hill’s motion for summary judgment on its statute of...more

Monkey Selfie Redux

When we last examined the intellectual property issues raised by a self-portrait taken by a talented female Indonesian crested black macaque—popularly known as the “Monkey Selfie”—we concluded that there was unlikely to be...more

Managing Your Online Content and Website

A SURVEY OF PRIVACY, COPYRIGHT, AND TRADEMARK ISSUES - Today, even Elvis has a Facebook page, Instagram2 and Google+ accounts, a Twitter handle, a Pinterest board, and a mobile app. The Internet and the mobile...more

Your Client is Hacked and Personal Information is Leaked Online – Now What?

You are general counsel to a company, and your CEO steps into your office, clutching his iPhone in one hand and wiping sweat from his brow with the other, and tells you that a compromising photograph of him was stolen from...more

Seventh Circuit Criticizes Second Circuit's "Transformative Use" Approach to Fair Use

On September 15, 2014, the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Seventh Circuit issued a notable opinion on the relevance and importance of "transformative use" on the copyright fair use analysis. (Kienitz v. Sconnie Nation LLC, No....more

Ownership of Photograph by Employee

While our last post dealt with the creation of photographs and other works of authorship by primates, robots and divine beings, this story is a little more grounded in facts that you might see in the average work...more

Wikimedia Makes Monkey Out Of Photographer (Or Is It Vice Versa?)

Last month, Wikimedia (the operator of Wikipedia) again refused the request of British photographer David Slater to remove a picture of a monkey from the Wikimedia Commons database of publicly available photographs....more

Status Updates - September 2014 #4

..Disappearing ink. Facebook is testing, for a small group of users, a feature that will permit a user to schedule a post for automatic deletion after a specified period of time. It seems that the period can range from an...more

Monkey See, Monkey Do… However Monkey Does Not Enjoy Copyright Protection

I know this story crested a few weeks ago, but who can resist it? A famous 1998 Molson Canadian ad posed a Canadian version of the infinite monkey theorem. The cheeky ad, showing a seemingly endless array of monkeys on...more

The Next Time Your Pet Takes a Selfie...

It has been two years since British nature photographer David Slater first asked Wikimedia Commons to remove several photos of a crested black macaque from its online collection of public domain images. Slater claimed to own...more

Markit to Market - August 2014

The August issue of Sterne Kessler's MarkIt to MarketTM newsletter is all about monkey business, including an analysis of the copyright debate between British photographer David Slater and Wikimedia Commons over "selfies"...more

#Monkey-Selfie

The dispute between Wikipedia and the British photographer David Slater recently reported in various news outlets is not new. It is actually the continuation of a dispute that began in July 2011 between the UK based Caters...more

A Little More Monkey Business. . .

Since our prior post, the “monkeying around” has only continued. At the end of last week, the U.S. Copyright Office stated definitively that it would not “register works produced by plants, animals or divine or supernatural...more

Cheeky Monkey: Wikipedia claims copyright comes down to the press of a button

In my childhood, come summer, the UK Parliament would go into recess, and because that seemed to signal the end of lots of newsworthy items—political scandals, Government and opposition taunting each other, etc.—the period...more

Agence France Presse v. Morel

Agence France Presse v. Morel - USDC, S.D. New York, August 13, 2014 - District court upholds jury’s award of maximum statutory copyright damages of $1.2 million, plus $20,000 in DMCA damages, finding sufficient...more

Legal World Goes Bananas Over Monkey Selfie Copyright Dispute

Looks like some copyright monkey business is afoot! Wikipedia, the collaborative free online encyclopedia, and David Slater, a British photographer, are currently in a copyright dispute over a photograph taken by a primate....more

Using Images Without Permission is No Monkey Business

Who owns the rights to a selfie taken by a monkey? While it sounds like a law school exam, it is based on a real story as reported here by the American Bar Association. According to the article, a monkey picked up the...more

Monkey See, Monkey Do Selfie?

Is photography nowadays really so easy even a monkey can do it? What about a caveman? If Wikimedia is right, the caveman would own a copyright in his selfie (or perhaps Geico, under the work for hire doctrine)...more

Copyright Ownership is not Monkey Business: Wikimedia and Slater Fight Over Selfie Photographs

A simmering dispute about ownership of a copyright in photographs has now garnered international attention. As more fully reported in an article in the British newspaper The Telegraph, British photographer David Slater has...more

Copyright and Forum Shopping

Having been brought up at a time when the humour of Monty Python was influential on a young mind, I can’t help thinking of the ‘nudge, nudge, wink, wink’, sketch when reading about photographs. In the sketch, Eric Idle asks a...more

Copyright Litigation and the Risk of Double Costs

An American photojournalist, Ms. Leuthold, was on the scene in New York City on September 11, 2001. She licensed a number of still photographs to the CBC for use in a documentary about the 9/11 attacks. The photos were...more

Stock Photo Agency Need Not List All Photographs in Its Compilation

Alaska Stock, LLC v. Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Pub. Co. - Joining with the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Fourth Circuit, the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit ruled that a stock photo agency is the valid...more

Alaska Stock, LLC v. Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Co. - USCA Ninth Circuit, March 18, 2014

Alaska Stock, LLC v. Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Co. - USCA Ninth Circuit, March 18, 2014: Ninth Circuit holds that copyright registration of database of stock photography successfully registered component...more

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