• copyright

    The 2d Circuit Is Part Way There on Eden Toys

    by  • August 1, 2016 • copyright • 0 Comments

    I have long complained about a defense that comes up in copyright cases, originating with the Second Circuit’s Eden Toys, Inc. v. Florelee Undergarment Co. Eden Toys involved a challenge to standing based on the timing of of an exclusive license. The case has heavily-quoted language about the challenge: In this case, in which...

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    Three Registrations, One Work: The Answer

    by  • April 29, 2016 • copyright • 2 Comments

    I previously posted about a copyright infringement suit with three registrations for the same work, brought by William L. Roberts aka Rick Ross, and Andrew Harr and Jermaine Jackson aka The Runners, alleging infringement of a musical work titled “Hustlin’.” I asked what happens on a motion for summary judgment on the questions “was...

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    Three Registrations, One Work: A Quiz

    by  • April 27, 2016 • copyright • 0 Comments

    (Explicit lyrics) We have a copyright infringement lawsuit filed by William L. Roberts, aka Rick Ross, and Andrew Harr and Jermaine Jackson, aka The Runners, alleging infringement of a musical work titled “Hustlin’.” In 2001, Roberts signed a recording agreement with Slip ‘N Slide Records (SNS), a name used interchangeably in agreements with First-N-Gold...

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    The Security Interest Quiz Answer

    by  • January 20, 2016 • copyright • 0 Comments

    I previously offered a quiz asking you to decide who, between a secured party and a licensee, owned the rights in an improved version of software. And the answer is — Pro Marketing, owner of the security interest. I missed it, but it is a straightforward answer. The key is that the collateral included...

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    A Security Interest Quiz

    by  • January 18, 2016 • copyright • 1 Comment

    Priva Technologies didn’t do well in its business. It financed its business, first, by taking a loan and granting a security interest in assets, including in its software, and second, as part of a reorganization, by assigning the improvements in the software to a licensee. Then it shuttered. Who owns the improvements? The original...

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    “By Operation of Law” Addendum

    by  • December 14, 2015 • copyright • 0 Comments

    I recently chided a court for not recognizing that one of the parties was claiming ownership of copyright “by operation of law,” specifically “under the operation of California law … governing partnerships, promoters, agents, fiduciaries and cofounders, not as a question of employment, work for hire … or joint work.” The court never reached...

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    “By Operation of Law”

    by  • December 3, 2015 • copyright • 4 Comments

    I’m seeing what I believe is a misunderstanding of the statutory section describing transfer of copyright. Section 204(a) of the Copyright Act, titled “Execution of Transfers of Copyright Ownership,” says A transfer of copyright ownership, other than by operation of law, is not valid unless an instrument of conveyance, or a note or memorandum...

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    Infringement Without Confusion?

    by  • November 9, 2015 • copyright, trademark • 8 Comments

    It’s a simple case, but simple doesn’t mean you get to take shortcuts on the legal rationale. At the end of 1998 Ford and ThermoAnalytics entered into a License Agreement for RadTherm software for heat mapping. In the agreement, FGTI (Ford Global Technologies, Inc.) granted ThermoAnalytics an exclusive license to develop and commercialize “FGTI...

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    A Proper Copyright Assignment

    by  • November 2, 2015 • copyright • 1 Comment

    I have called Righthaven the gift that keeps on giving. In Righthaven, the plaintiff tried to obscure the fact that there wasn’t a true copyright assignment by putting the relevant terms in different agreements. Righthaven, a copyright troll, eventually got whacked for it by the 9th Circuit. Now, when defendants see any kind of...

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    Copyright and Egyptian Law

    by  • October 26, 2015 • copyright • 1 Comment

    Jay-Z’s win in a copyright infringement suit has been widely reported. Jay-Z obtained a license to use an Egyptian work written by Baligh Namdi called “Khosara, Khosara” in “Big Pimpin”: Namdi’s heir, Fahmy, sued Jay-Z claiming that “Big Pimpin” was an unlawful derivative work, infringing both the moral and economic rights in Khosara, Khosara....

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