Will Alfonso Ribiero Win His Lawsuit Against Fortnite Over “The Carlton Dance?” (Hint: No)

Image Courtesy of Cinema of Gaming

Actor Alfonso Ribiero played nerdy guy Carlton on “The Fresh Prince of Bel Air” back in the last century. One of the greatest scenes from the show was when Cartlon, home alone, dances wildly to Tom Jones’ hit “Its Not Unusual.” The dance became his signature move and dubbed The Carlton. Now two video game… Continue reading Will Alfonso Ribiero Win His Lawsuit Against Fortnite Over “The Carlton Dance?” (Hint: No)

It’s All About the Mouse: Protecting Disney Has Thwarted Public Works

When I first started practicing law in 1986, copyright in a piece was easy to determine. It lasted 28 years from date of publication and then could be renewed for another 28 years. That gave the author a good 56 years of exclusive ownership to profit from: then the work became the world’s – public… Continue reading It’s All About the Mouse: Protecting Disney Has Thwarted Public Works

Court Dismisses Lawsuit Over Taylor Swift Song Because Lyrics are Too Banal

U.S. District Judge Michael Fitzgerald of the Central District Court of California has dismissed a lawsuit against Taylor Swift, in which songwriters Nathan Butler and Sean Hall alleged that her hit song “Shake It Off” ripped off the lyrics to 3LW’s “Playas Gon’ Play,” which the pair wrote for the ’90s girl group. Butler and… Continue reading Court Dismisses Lawsuit Over Taylor Swift Song Because Lyrics are Too Banal

Defense Dep’t Says US Gov’t Not Guantanamo Detainees Own Art Detainees Created

Muhammad Ansi, “Untitled (Crying Eye)” (2016), work on paper

The Dept of Defense changed a policy this month affecting the 41 remaining detainees at Guantanamo Bay Naval Base, known as Gitmo. The DOD ruled that detainees did not possess the artwork they created while detained and could not display it publicly or sell it. Art classes started at Gitmo “in the later years of… Continue reading Defense Dep’t Says US Gov’t Not Guantanamo Detainees Own Art Detainees Created

Troll Lawyer Denied Attorney’s Fees in Copyright Lawsuit

In an important decision from the Federal Court for the District of Oregon, a court has denied attorney’s fees to a successful copyright litigant because the court ruled that in this instance the award did not further the purposes of the Copyright Act. The lawsuit involves the pervasive litigation filed by porn companies against folks… Continue reading Troll Lawyer Denied Attorney’s Fees in Copyright Lawsuit

New Copyright Regs Could Screw Website Owners: Seriously, Beware!

From the Electronic Frontier Foundation comes this news: Under a new rule from the Copyright Office, website owners could be exposed to massive risk of copyright liability simply for neglecting to submit an online form on time. The rule could eliminate the safe harbor status that thousands of websites receive under the Digital Millennium Copyright… Continue reading New Copyright Regs Could Screw Website Owners: Seriously, Beware!

Can Posting a Spoiler Violate Copyright Law? AMC Says “Hell Yes!” and “We’ll Sue You If You Do!”

Everybody hates Internet spoilers. You know,those people who either binge-watch a fully-uploaded whole season before you get to Episode 3 or who feel the need to review the most recent episode of a weekly show immediately after it airs while you planned on watching it via your DVR two days later. Spoilers like that are… Continue reading Can Posting a Spoiler Violate Copyright Law? AMC Says “Hell Yes!” and “We’ll Sue You If You Do!”

$1 Billion Lawsuit Against Getty Images Shows Effects of Trolling

Acclaimed photographer Carol Highsmith has filed a Federal lawsuit alleging violations of the Digital Millennium Copyright Act against Getty Images and other parties for their attempt to charge her and others for the use of her own photos. Ms. Highsmith has been praised by the Library of Congress for her donation of thousands and thousands… Continue reading $1 Billion Lawsuit Against Getty Images Shows Effects of Trolling

Monkey Can See, Monkey Can Do, But Monkey Can’t Own

On Wednesday, a federal judge said the macaque who famously snapped a picture of himself cannot be declared the owner of the image’s copyright. The photo in question was taken in 2011 on the Indonesian island of Sulawesi, with a camera owned by nature photographer David Slater. But Slater didn’t trip the shutter: the macaque… Continue reading Monkey Can See, Monkey Can Do, But Monkey Can’t Own