• Posts Tagged ‘joint authorship’

    Notifying Co-Authors About a Lawsuit

    by  • June 17, 2019 • copyright • 0 Comments

    The Copyright Act of 1976 made a fundamental change to copyright law by making copyright divisible. Authors can give someone else exclusive rights in a portion of their copyright, for example the exclusive right of first publication, retaining no right of first publication for themselves. The drafters of the Copyright Act also contemplated that...

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    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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    Litigation as Commercial Strategy

    by  • November 6, 2013 • copyright • 0 Comments

    In Complex Systems, Inc. v. ABN AMRO Bank N.V., plaintiff CSI licensed its Banktrade software to an ABN AMRO (“ABN”) information technology subsidiary (“IT”) for use by the entire ABN enterprise. The case arose because ABN sold IT, along with the license, to Bank of America but ABN nevertheless continued to use the software. IT...

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    Who, Exactly, is an “Author”?

    by  • February 11, 2013 • copyright, featured • 0 Comments

    I confess that I haven’t paid enough attention to Aalmuhammed v. Lee, 202 F.3d 1227 (9th Cir. 2000) and its direction on the issue of “authorship” in a joint work. In Aalmuhammed, the Ninth Circuit observed that not everyone who contributes to a work is an author and set out, in the context of...

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    Copyright and Foreign Works

    by  • November 29, 2012 • copyright • 0 Comments

    A quick primer, courtesy of the Northern District of Illinois, on ownership and infringement of foreign copyrighted works. In Games Workshop Ltd. v. Chapterhouse Studios, LLC, the disputed works were miniature figurines to be used for a tabletop war game about a dystopian science-fantasy world called Warhammer 40,000. The owner of the Warhammer 40,000...

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    Assignment or License?

    by  • January 19, 2012 • copyright

    I last wrote about the licensing rights of a joint copyright owner as discussed in Corbello v. DeVito. The same case also had two agreements that the court needed to construe before deciding who owned what rights in the copyright. Plaintiff Corbello is the widow and heir of Rex Woodard, who wrote an authorized...

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    The Power of Joint Authorship

    by  • November 30, 2011 • copyright

    There are many copyright cases where joint ownership of copyright is raised as a defense. Since a joint owner of a copyright is not an infringer but, at most, has a duty of accounting to the other joint owners, it’s one way to avoid infringement.  Often it’s a last-ditch defensive maneuver, claiming that the...

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    Not Just Ownership, Authorship

    by  • September 29, 2011 • copyright

    Plaintiff Chris Sevier, owner of Severe Records, LLC, collaborated with artist Shanna Crooks on two songs,“Better” and “Watching Me Leave,” the extent of the collaboration on the songs and the sound recordings TBD.  Both of them distributed the sound recordings.  Next was the expected falling out, and Shanna Crooks’ new management company accused Sevier...

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    Is the Claim Time-Barred?

    by  • February 3, 2011 • copyright

    So here are the facts: Business Resources Bureau, Inc. (BRB) was the publisher. Alan M. Schlein was the author. BRB hired Shirley Kwan, at Schlein’s request, to do 100 hours of editing. BRB told Kwan that she would “be given a credit or byline on the title page as editor on the project.” After...

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