• copyright

    Ninth Circuit Walks Back Sybersound Records

    by  • February 16, 2015 • copyright • 1 Comment

    As I’ve written about before, Sybersound is a 2008 Ninth Circuit decision that was not well-received by copyright authorities. We now have a second Ninth Circuit opinion interpreting Sybersound that undoes the original harm. The decision is Corbello v. DeVito, the case that just keeps on giving for someone who writes about copyright ownership....

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    The Effect of Reed Elsevier v. Muchnick

    by  • December 22, 2014 • copyright • 0 Comments

    Section 411 of the Copyright Act says that “no civil action for infringement of the copyright in any United States work shall be instituted until preregistration or registration of the copyright claim has been made in accordance with this title.” In Reed Elsevier, Inc. v. Muchnick, the Supreme Court held that § 411 is a...

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    Having Documents Helps

    by  • October 15, 2014 • copyright, patent, trademark • 0 Comments

    I usually write about ownership issues in the context of infringement claims. But I ran across a tax case where management (or actually, lack of management) of the ownership of the intellectual property ended up creating a tax deficiency on 29.6 million dollars. In 1976 William and Patricia Cavallaro started a contract manufacturing company,...

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    Remember the Details

    by  • October 13, 2014 • copyright • 0 Comments

    This case demonstrates why you follow up to make sure tasks get completed. Sometimes it’s the little details that get you … Vincent Heck is the sole member of plaintiff Clarity Software LLC, a company that distributes software. Heck wrote the original software, owned a couple of companies and licensed the software to those...

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    Refusing to Execute the Documents

    by  • August 25, 2014 • copyright • 0 Comments

    Songwriters Daniel Cohen and Julie Didier owned their own publishing company, Bayou Blanc Music Company, which owned the copyrights in their songs. When they divorced in 1985, the divorce decree incorporated an agreement that Didier would continue to own Bayou Blanc but she would transfer Cohen’s pro rata share of the copyright ownership in...

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    Who Owns an Academic Journal?

    by  • July 28, 2014 • copyright, trademark • 1 Comment

    For decades Duke University published an academic journal called Social Science History that was edited by The Social Science History Association. At the time of the dispute, the two were parties to an “Editing and Publishing Agreement,” which provided that: If you can’t read it, the agreement was for five years and auto-renewed every...

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    The Photography Suits In a Nutshell

    by  • July 8, 2014 • copyright • 1 Comment

    I’ve been writing for some time (recursive link) about numerous lawsuits between photographers, or their agencies, and textbook publishers that have used photographs in excess of what they originally licensed for their books. Mostly I’ve been writing about challenges to standing, which are early in the cases on a motion to dismiss. But some...

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