David S. Gold
Branding is not a new concept, nor are the various intellectual property laws that protect brands. What is new to most is how this burgeoning industry can take advantage of those laws within the context of state and federal restrictions.
That U.S. copyright-assignment termination issues are among the most complex in the copyright field becomes even more apparent when attempts to reclaim copyrights involve aspects of international law. Few courts have ruled, however, on the impact of international law on U.S. copyright-assignment terminations. The most recent to do so is the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Second Circuit in Ennio Morricone Music Inc. v. Bixio Music Group Ltd.
Karen Hoffman Lent and Kenneth Schwartz
In June, the DOJ announced its plans to review the two music-licensing antitrust consent decrees that have been in place, in some shape or form, for almost 80 years. Due to this newly initiated review, the competitive mechanisms that dictate how music is broadcast, streamed or played live could drastically change.
The U.S. Court of Appeals for the Third Circuit tossed out an injunction against sales of a book by Commerce Bank founder Vernon Hill II even after finding that the work infringed on a manuscript copyright owned by TD Bank.
Two recent circuit court cases clarified copyright infringement of photographs on the Internet. Both cases serve as cautionary tales for those who takes photographs for their websites from the Internet without investigating copyright rights.
Howard Shire and Christine Weller
Mercedes Benz USA LLC v. Bombardier
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.
A unanimous U.S. Supreme Court, led by Justice Brett Kavanaugh, held that the phrase “full costs” in §505 of the Copyright Act means all of the costs specifically enumerated in the general cost-shifting statutes, such as transcripts and fees for court-appointed experts and interpreters.
Robert J. Bernstein and Robert W. Clarida
The Supreme Court had granted cert in Fourth Estate to resolve a split in the federal circuit courts as to whether §411(a) of the Copyright Act could be read to allow commencement of an infringement action once a registration application filed with the Copyright Office is complete (the “application approach”) or, instead, only (subject to limited statutorily specified exceptions) upon issuance by the Copyright Office of the registration (the “registration approach”).
James A. Trigg and Bethany R. Nelson
In Fourth Estate Pub. Benefit Corp. v. Wall-Street.com, LLC, the Supreme Court resolved a circuit split decades in the making by holding that a copyright is not “registered” within the meaning of the Copyright Act unless and until a registration certificate actually has issued.