News & Analysis as of

The Copyright Act

4 Key Takeaways: Consulting Agreements – Who Owns the IP?

Silicon Valley-based Kilpatrick Townsend Counsel Alan Dow focuses his practice on patent prosecution, acquisition and counseling, and on intellectual property and commercial transactions. Mr. Dow recently presented on...more

Media Law Bulletin: “All I’ve Got Is a Photograph” — Copyright Law’s Preemption of Right of Publicity Claims

by Sedgwick LLP on

The names and likenesses of celebrities, athletes and other public figures can be extremely valuable, as evidenced by the premium prices paid by many companies for celebrity endorsements and celebrity-branded goods. Think...more

Graffiti Artists Tag Camuto Fashion House for Copyright Infringement

by Dorsey & Whitney LLP on

Earlier this month, four Los Angeles-based graffiti artists, “Rime,” “Host18,” “Taboo” and “Reme” filed suit against the Vince Camuto fashion house and related entities alleging copyright infringement for “inexplicably...more

Copyright Protection for Tattoos: Are Tattoos Copies?

by Downey Brand LLP on

Abstract - This Note argues that, although “flash art” and other drawings upon which a tattoo may be based are likely copyrightable subject matter under the Copyright Act of 1976 (Copyright Act), the policy implications...more

University's Infringing Reproductions Fall Short of Fair Dealing

by Bennett Jones LLP on

The fair dealing user right, as an exception to copyright infringement, has its limits. The fact that a use falls within an enumerated purpose under the Copyright Act is no guarantee of immunity from infringement. To avoid...more

Diddy’s @Infringement Instagram Post

by Weintraub Tobin on

In today’s age of rapid fire social media, posting to feed the ever growing hunger of a digitally connected audience has become second nature to celebrities and other influencers. In fact, the larger the number of followers,...more

Does This Selfie Make Me Look Like a Copyright Infringer?

by Lewitt Hackman on

The Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals will consider a copyright infringement suit brought by a primate – specifically, Naruto, an Indonesian crested macaque that supposedly made fantastic use of his opposable thumbs and took a...more

Circuit Divide: Is Registration a Precondition for Copyright Infringement Suits?

by McDermott Will & Emery on

Addressing the regional circuit split over whether copyright registration occurs when a copyright application is filed or when the Register of Copyrights registers the copyright, the US Court of Appeals for the 11th Circuit...more

Why having a clear understanding with employees is important

by McNair Law Firm, P.A. on

Over the years, we have written a number of articles about the importance of making sure your employment documents contain clear, understandable language. One of our federal district judges was recently faced with an...more

Two layers of photo ownership in conflict in street photography case

by Thompson Coburn LLP on

“I own the photos.” It seems like a simple statement, but in copyright law, ownership isn’t simple. One person can own physical photographs, but not have the right to use them, because someone else owns the copyrights....more

Practice Tips for Copyright Owners in the Wake of Star Athletica v. Varsity Brands

After considering almost a year’s worth of substantive briefing (including fifteen separate amicus briefs), oral argument, at least ten distinct tests employed in courts throughout the country, as well as numerous novel tests...more

All infringements aren’t equal

by Thompson Coburn LLP on

Are all copyright infringements created equal? Or should courts distinguish between different levels of intent, significance, and harm? Results in two recent cases suggest that circumstances have significant effects on...more

Media Law Bulletin: To Sample or Not to Sample?

by Sedgwick LLP on

Conflict is brewing among the United States Courts of Appeals as to when a musical artist’s use of a sample from another artist’s musical work is non-infringing. Three key opinions analyzing this issue were decided by the...more

Eleventh Circuit Joins Split Court Decisions on Registration Precondition for Copyright Suits

Section 411(a) of the Copyright Act generally requires copyright registration, or a refusal of registration, before a copyright action may be filed. This has led to a variety of decisions from the Circuit and District Courts...more

The Jury Is Still Out On What “Registration” Means Under Section 411 Of The Copyright Act.

by Weintraub Tobin on

The Copyright Act provides that “Registration” of a copyright is a precondition to filing suit for copyright infringement. 17 U.S.C. § 411(a). We are still trying to figure out exactly when registration occurs....more

Got Registration? You Better if You’re Filing a Copyright Case in the 11th Circuit

by Dorsey & Whitney LLP on

Section 411(a) of the Copyright Act provides, in pertinent part, that “no civil action for infringement of the copyright in any United States work shall be instituted until preregistration or registration of the copyright...more

Registration v. Application: A Copyright Circuit Split

Registration is not required for valid copyright ownership, but it is required before you can bring a copyright infringement lawsuit. Section 411(a) of the Copyright Act provides that...more

Best Practices for Using Third-Party Content on Your Company’s Website

Does your company’s website include or link to third-party content? If so, there are potential legal issues that may arise under copyright law and website terms of use that can be minimized or avoided by implementing some...more

Application or Registration? Eleventh Circuit Widens Circuit Split

The Eleventh Circuit has widened the circuit split on whether a copyright application or completed registration is required before filing a copyright infringement lawsuit. In Fourth Estate Public Benefit v. Wall-Street.com,...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

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

Annotations to Georgia’s Legal Code Are Protected By Copyright

by Reed Smith on

The state of Georgia and the Code Revision Commission achieved a victory when a federal court granted their motion for summary judgment, holding that Georgia’s “Official Code of Georgia Annotated” (OCGA) was protected by...more

Something for Designers to (Maybe) Cheer About: Star Athletica v. Varsity Brands

Historically, fashion designers, as well as other designers whose creative efforts are incorporated into useful/functional articles like clothing, shoes, and furniture, have struggled successfully to assert copyright...more

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