Although the claims failed, the district court did not abuse its discretion in rejecting the defendants’ request for a fee award because the plaintiff’s positions were not objectively unreasonable. The U.S. Court of Appeals in San Francisco has affirmed district court orders granting summary judgment in favor of a swimming pool builder and remodeler that…

Infringement claims based on failure to obtain licenses for three other songs failed because the plaintiff licensing company did not hold exclusive rights in those works. The vocal music director of Burbank High School and other defendants associated with the school’s student choir program engaged in fair use by adapting, altering, and performing segments of…

The Spanish Supreme Court has ruled in a case concerning the infringement of copyright of a student whose professor reproduced, without the former’s consent, certain sections of the student’s research work. This case gave the Court the opportunity to analyse the issue of originality of academic works and provide guidance on authorship of a University…

On 12 June 2019, the High Court of the Netherlands referred four questions to the Court of Justice of the European Union (CJEU) for a preliminary ruling. The questions concern an ongoing battle between Stichting Brein, a Dutch anti-piracy organisation representing movie and music industries, and NSE (News-Service.com), an online platform for Usenet services. Stichting…

Jury instructions not erroneous or prejudicial to plaintiff; court dumps “inverse ratio rule” providing for lower standard of proof of substantial similarity when a high degree of access is shown. After an en banc rehearing, the U.S. Court of Appeals in San Francisco has affirmed a district court’s judgment after a jury trial in favor…

Because hard drives used in audio recording devices in cars sold by Ford, GM, and Chrysler did not contain “only sounds,” they were not covered by the Audio Home Recording Act of 1992. The Alliance of Artists and Recording Companies (AARC)—a nonprofit organization formed to collect and distribute royalties under the Audio Home Recording Act…

The paintings, although temporary, had achieved “recognized stature” as artworks and were protected by the Visual Artists Rights Act. Artists who created “aerosol art” paintings on the exteriors of buildings in the well-known “5Pointz” area of Long Island City, New York, with the consent of the buildings’ owners, were properly granted $6.75 million in statutory…

On 28 March 2019, the German Federal Court (BGH) was asked to review a lower court’s decision on the legality of the unauthorised uploading of the 30 day free trial version of Microsoft software on an online trader’s website. This gave the BGH the chance to further clarify the applicability of the German Copyright Act…

Part I of this post provided an overview of the facts of the case and the recent opinion of AG Campos Sanchez-Bordona. Overall, the opinion is a mixed result. It makes some good points but also some ill-judged ones, and these will be explored in more detail in this post. Let us start with the positive…

This case concerned the famous Brompton bicycle which can be folded to carry away after use (Case C‑833/18, SI, Brompton Bicycle Ltd. v. Chedech / Get2Get). The bike was once protected by a patent and, following its expiry, the defendant (Chedech/Get2Get) embarked on selling a similar bike in Belgium (the designs of the two bikes…