With the popular press and the blogosphere abuzz over the recent TV game show triumph of Watson, IBM’s “Jeopardy”-playing supercomputer, there’s an intriuging hint that the whimsical cyber trivia wizard might have his own darker Hal-esque side: Is the device named after company founder Thomas J. Watson possibly an infringer on others’ copyrights?
A federal judge in Dallas has rejected a lawsuit filed by Evan Stone on behalf of Larry Flint Publishing, claiming more than 1,000 unnamed individuals infringed the copyright on the adult flick “This Ain’t Avatar XXX.” Counsel in this case employed a strategy in which plaintiffs seek to join multiple, even myriad defendants in one mass complaint. This procedure has been attempted in a handful of copyright lawsuits across the country filed on behalf of independent film studios and X-rated filmmakers; these suits name thousands of defendants at once but also have not progressed far in the courts.
It is always interesting to wonder about how real people are portrayed in movies and what, if anything, that individual is going to do regarding certain misconceptions. Well, Mark Fischer and Franklin Levy of Duane Morris LLP recently wrote a very interesting article directly related to this topic, focusing on Facebook creator Mark Zuckerberg and the film “The Social Network,” in which he is not so favorably portrayed.
With their partners at the International Intellectual Property Alliance, the Recording Industry Association of America has submitted a “piracy watch list” to the Office of the U.S. Trade Representative, with the groups pointing to two countries as the worst hotbeds for intellectual property theft and piracy: Spain and Canada.
In ‘Oh, Really?’ the Biederman Blog’s editors — voracious consumers of all matters pop culture — cast a curious, skeptical, fancicul, fun and smart end-of-the-week eye on popular productions, sharing their keen observations about legal matters these raise…
In the movie Inception, Ellen Paige portrays Ariadne, a gifted architect of dream environments. Of course such creations aren’t possible now. But what if they became a reality someday soon? Would they be protected under copyright?
To own a valid copyright in a work, the law requires fixation, originality and expression. Let’s examine whether this box-office hit with eight Oscar nominations crosses not only a sci-fi barrier but a legal copyright threshold:
A California appellate court has allowed the band No Doubt to pursue its litigation with Activision, a case that’s key because it underscores how game publishers and developers must use care in their licensing agreements. A crucial point emerging from this matter is that publishers and developers cannot use peoples’ likenesses as they please.
Elvis Presley Enterprises, the Memphis-based firm that runs worldwide licensing for all things Elvis, has aggressively tracked down individuals they say are behind distribution of bootleg concert performances and albums of the King. And they’re litigating with Elvis’ music publisher.
Sure, the possibility that a resuscitated Eminem might snare a Grammy renewed attention by many to rap. And despite the terrible funk that hangs over the recording industry with its sagging sales, the return of Marshall Bruce Mathers III and the heavy presence of other urban music artists at the industry’s recent awards night might have reminded that, yes, a big part of music — and what fuels it as a lucrative trade for performers and attending professionals like lawyers — rests on the personal passion of different kinds of people. So it’s also worth noting that in a corner of the nearby legal academy, Jody Armour (shown at right) a professor in a name chair at a name law school put himself out, again, with his recent impassioned arguments about rap music, race, racism, the power of language and how this all fits in with the practice of law.
As a young accountant, James L. Perzik decided he would better his skills as a business man and enrolled in USC’s Gould School of law in pursuit of a legal degree. Later, when practicing transactional law in the late 1970s, Jerry Buss, a one-time chemistry professor and one of his longtime clients, decided to jump into the world of sports after a successful career in real estate development. The rest is history.