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Tag Archives: Copyright

The CJEU’s Nintendo v. PC Box: ‘Proportionate’ DRMs?

Posted in Intellectual Property

By Alain Strowel, Michael Clancy and Hee-Eun Kim On January 23, 2014, the Court of Justice of the European Union (CJEU) ruled on the legality of anti-circumvention measures or DRMs for video games (Case C-355/12 Nintendo v. PC Box).[1]  Here are the links to the full text of the judgment and the non-binding Advocate General’s… Continue Reading

Ireland Proposes Amendments to Copyright Law

Posted in Intellectual Property

Written by Ezra Steinhardt and Colin Warriner On 29 October 2013, the Republic of Ireland’s Department of Jobs, Enterprise and Innovation (DJEI) published a report containing proposed amendments to its copyright laws, named “Modernising Copyright” (“the Report”).  Taking account of submissions received during a public consultation that ran between February and May 2012, the DJEI’s… Continue Reading

European Court Issues Ruling on Jurisdiction in Cross-EU Copyright Infringement Case

Posted in Intellectual Property

Written by Ezra Steinhardt and Colin Warriner On 3 October 2013, in the case of Peter Pinckney vs. KDG Mediatech AG, the Court of Justice of the European Union (CJEU) confirmed that, with certain qualifications, when a copyrighted work is reproduced in one Member State, and offered for sale online by companies established in another,… Continue Reading

Copyright Suits Against Anonymous Defendants Must Involve Common ‘Swarm’

Posted in Intellectual Property

A federal court last week ruled that copyright owners can only sue multiple peer-to-peer users if all of the defendants participated in the same infringement scheme. In recent years, copyright owners have sued people who have shared their movies, songs, and other content via peer-to-peer networks such as BitTorrent. The copyright owners use proprietary software to… Continue Reading

Oral Arguments Tee Up Widely Anticipated 9th Circuit Decision in “Aereokiller” Case

Posted in Broadcasting & Cable, Intellectual Property

A three-judge panel of the Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals heard oral arguments on Tuesday in the so-called “Aereokiller” litigation.  The case tests whether services that allow subscribers to stream broadcast television on their computers and mobile devices infringe the exclusive right of copyright owners to publicly perform their copyrighted works.  Specifically, the Ninth Circuit… Continue Reading

Fair Uses Big and Small in Recent Copyright Cases

Posted in Intellectual Property

A pair of recent decisions—one involving a work of street art used by the band Green Day for an in-concert video; the other about a single line from a William Faulkner novel paraphrased in a Woody Allen film—offer two distinct examples of the important role that copyright’s fair use doctrine plays in today’s popular media.

Clickwrap Agreement Found Sufficient to Transfer Copyright Ownership

Posted in Intellectual Property

In a case of first impression, the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Fourth Circuit recently held that accepting a website’s terms of use through a so-called “clickwrap” agreement constitutes a signature for purposes of effecting a transfer of copyright. The case, Metropolitan Regional Information Systems, Inc. v. American Home Realty Network, Inc., revolved around… Continue Reading

Ninth Circuit Panel Rules Against Fox Preliminary Injunction Request in Dish Hopper Case

Posted in Intellectual Property

Recently, a Ninth Circuit panel unanimously affirmed the district court’s denial of a preliminary injunction in Fox’s copyright and contractual challenge to Dish’s Hopper set-top boxes and related AutoHop feature.  The Ninth Circuit emphasized that it applied a “limited and deferential review” that does not “determin[e] the ultimate merits of the case.”  In particular, the… Continue Reading

Supreme Court Clarifies Broad Geographic Reach of Copyright’s First-Sale Doctrine

Posted in Intellectual Property

On Tuesday, the Supreme Court issued its opinion in Kirtsaeng v. John Wiley & Sons, Inc., resolving a long-simmering debate by holding that copyright’s first-sale doctrine applies to copyrighted works lawfully made anywhere in the world.  The upshot is that someone who buys an authorized, foreign-made copy (Kirtsaeng involved a foreign version of a textbook)… Continue Reading

English Court Upholds a Copyright Sub-licence Despite the Termination of the Head Licence

Posted in Intellectual Property

By Morag Peberdy and Jacqueline Clover In a departure from the normal approach, the English High Court has found that in certain circumstances a copyright sub-licence may survive termination of the head licence. This was the Court’s holding in VLM Holdings Limited v Ravensworth Digital Services Limited [2013] EWHC 228 (Ch). Because of the specific… Continue Reading

White House Calls for Legalization of Some Cell Phone Unlocking

Posted in Intellectual Property, Telecommunications

The Obama administration issued a statement on Monday declaring that consumers not bound by service agreements should be able to unlock their cellular devices for use with other network providers.  In the official response to a petition on the We The People website, a senior White House advisor on the Internet, innovation and privacy agreed… Continue Reading

Federal Courts Increasingly Receptive to IP Geolocation Data; Copyright, Other Lawsuits Affected

Posted in Intellectual Property, Telecommunications

A series of recent decisions suggests that federal courts increasingly are accepting evidence derived from Internet Protocol (IP) geolocation databases, which make it possible to look up the geographic location of a computer or other similarly-equipped electronic device.  This development may be particularly significant in the area of copyright litigation, where alleged online infringers can… Continue Reading

China and U.S. Make Technology-Related Commitments at 23rd JCCT

Posted in Intellectual Property, Privacy & Data Security, Telecommunications

Last month, senior officials from the U.S. and China conducted the 23rd U.S.-China Joint Commission on Commerce and Trade (JCCT) in Washington, D.C.  The JCCT was founded in 1983 as a forum for high-level dialogue on bilateral trade issues.  This year’s JCCT resulted in several technology-related commitments from both China and the U.S. China’s technology-related… Continue Reading

A Mixed Decision for Fox in the Hopper Case

Posted in Broadcasting & Cable, Intellectual Property

The California court that is hearing Fox’s challenge concerning DISH’s Hopper set-top-boxes and related AutoHop feature has issued a decision denying Fox’s request for a preliminary injunction.  The Hopper can be used to automatically record primetime programming from the four major broadcast television networks, and the AutoHop feature allows viewers to automatically skip the commercials… Continue Reading

Rights Holders Find Increasingly Favourable Climate for Requests for Website-Blocking Orders from Courts in Europe

Posted in Domain Names, Intellectual Property

By Jacqueline Clover and Ezra Steinhardt On 30 October, 2012, press reported that the Finnish Supreme Court had rejected an appeal from Elisa, a Finnish internet service provider (ISP), against a court order that required Elisa to block its users from accessing the well-known file-sharing website, The Pirate Bay. The order, which was granted in… Continue Reading

Supreme Court Hears Arguments in Foreign-Made Textbooks Case

Posted in Intellectual Property

The Supreme Court heard oral arguments Monday in Kirtsaeng v. John Wiley & Sons, Inc., a case addressing whether textbooks — and other copyrighted works — made abroad can be imported and sold in the United States without the copyright holder’s permission. The Court’s decision will clarify to what extent § 109(a) of the Copyright… Continue Reading

UK Government Urged to Champion Intellectual Property Rights

Posted in Intellectual Property

On 29 October 2012, the UK’s All-Party Parliamentary Intellectual Property Group published a report examining the Government’s role in promoting and protecting intellectual property (IP).  According to the report, which is based on the written submissions of almost 60 interested bodies, Government departments often fail to understand the importance of IP to the growth of… Continue Reading

Google and Publishers Reach Settlement in Book Digitization Case

Posted in Intellectual Property

Google and the Association of American Publishers (AAP) announced on October 4 that they have entered into a settlement agreement in a seven-year dispute over the search company’s Google Books Library project.  The project, which seeks to create a searchable digital archive of books from several major libraries around the world, has been the target of… Continue Reading

California to Offer Open Source Textbooks under Creative Commons Licenses

Posted in Intellectual Property

California Governor Jerry Brown signed into law two pieces of legislation on September 27, paving the way for the creation of free, open-source digital textbooks for 50 of the most popular lower-division courses in California’s public colleges and universities.  SB 1052 establishes the California Open Education Resources Council.  This body is tasked with selecting the… Continue Reading

Update: Orphan Works Directive Receives Final Approval from European Council

Posted in Intellectual Property

By Jacqueline Clover and Ezra Steinhardt Yesterday, the European Council issued its final approval for the Orphan Works Directive.  See our previous blog post about the Directive’s approval by the Parliament here.  The Council’s approval marks the last stage in the Directive’s legislative process. The Directive will now go on to be published in the… Continue Reading

German Court Refers Question on Cross-Border Copyright Infringement to the CJEU

Posted in Intellectual Property

By Ezra Steinhardt and Fredericka Argent InfoCuria and the UK Intellectual Property Office have released new information about a recent question referred to the Court of Justice of the European Union (CJEU) from the German Federal Supreme Court (Bundesgerichthof).  In essence, the reference asks the CJEU whether European courts, when considering copyright infringement in their… Continue Reading