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In the context of a copyright case, a defendant's prior bad acts and prior conduct are more useful to a plaintiff than is typical in civil litigation.
In the context of a copyright case, a defendant’s prior bad acts and prior conduct are more useful to a plaintiff than is typical in civil litigation. In many instances, copyright infringement lawsuits are brought against defendants who have been sued before for infringement, or related misconduct, or who have been the subject of allegations or informal complaints, or who simply have experience in copyright matters. Under Federal Rule of Evidence 404(b), the use to which prior bad acts and conduct may be put by a plaintiff in a regular civil case is limited, and Federal Rule of Evidence 403 balances the probative value of the evidence against prejudice. In copyright cases, however, as a practical matter, the plaintiff has somewhat more latitude, and such evidence may serve several distinct objectives. A defendant’s history, whether related to the misconduct at issue or not, may be used by a savvy plaintiff in three ways: 1) to establish willfulness, and thus both enhance the statutory damages award and obtain attorneys’ fees under the Copyright Act; 2) to establish knowledge, and thereby make a case (where appropriate) for contributory infringement; and 3) as a basis for injunctive relief.
By Erin Hennessy, Annie Allison and Logan Kotler
Copyright, Fortnite and the Ability to Protect How You Shake Your Groove Thing
The U.S. Supreme Court just crashed the copyright world’s latest dance party — stepping on the toes of a soiree of copyright infringement lawsuits against videogame developer Epic Games, the creator of Fortnite.
By John P. Isacson
IPRs have now been conducted for several years, and litigation has ensued over the procedures by which they are conducted. Decisions have been rendered by the U.S. Supreme Court and the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Federal Circuit, which have resolved some issues, created others, and altered procedures.
By Amanda H. Wilcox
Social media is growing up, and this means that brands of all sizes and across all industries are using social media as part of their marketing strategy. However, courts have confirmed that the basic tenets of intellectual property law and advertising law still apply. The following guidelines stem from common questions that clients often have in the area of social media marketing.
By Jeff Ginsberg and Zhiqiang Liu
Federal Circuit Declines to Follow Patent Office’s Subject Matter Eligibility Guidance In Affirming Trial Court’s Decision That Claims Are Directed to Patent-Ineligible Subject Matter