FAIR USE Act of 2007
"U.S. Representatives Rick Boucher (D-VA) and John Doolittle (R-CA), today introduced the Freedom And Innovation Revitalizing U.S. Entrepreneurship Act of 2007
(FAIR USE Act) to protect the fair use rights of users of copyrighted material and thereby enable consumers of digital media to use it in ways that enhance their personal convenience."
A copy of the bill and a section by section breakdown (in .doc format) are available
Artists Tobias Wong and Ken Courtney
make and market limited edition art objects that comment on consumer culture. Their 18 carat gold dipped "coke spoon"
recently got the attention of the McDonald's corporation which sent a cease and desist letter
to gallery/store, Citizen-Citizen
. Of course, the artistic message would be vastly different if the artists made only one unique spoon for exhibition. The fact that the spoons were being produced and distributed was central to the message. Distribution of multiple copies can often shift both copyright and trademark analysis in cases like this. (via Agenda, Inc.)
TTAB Hears SPAM Oral Arguments
The Seattle Trademark Lawyer has an excellent report from the oral argument in the SPAM v. SPAM ARREST cancellation proceeding.
. I'm very much looking forward to the TTAB hearings scheduled to take place in Boston next Fall.
IIPA Says Copyright Industries Accounted for 11.12% of US GDP in 2005
The International Intellectual Property Alliance
has issued its 11th economic report
. The report details the significant contributions by the US copyright industries to the US GDP. The report claims that the US "total" for copyright industries accounted for 11.12% of GDP in 2005. Keep in mind that the IIPA is not an independent organization
Out-Law.com has published a good (although short) primer on how cybercriminals operate
. Who knew Vincent Gallo
was doubling as a security specialist.
1976 Copyright Act Legislative History
William Patry plans to make the legislative history of the 76 Act freely available online
. This will be a great service to both academics and practicing lawyers, especially litigators. I can attest to the frustration of piecing together various testimony and reports for litigation purposes. Prof. Patry plans to post all of the 1950s Copyright Office studies and roundtable discussions, all Copyright Office reports, all Congressional reports, all Congressional hearing transcripts, and floor statements
The Big Game continued
Various parties have filed requests for extensions of time to oppose the NFL's THE BIG GAME trademark applications. The filings can be viewed here
Truth in music advertising
Virginia's Senate has passed a new law
that will fine musical groups who fail to have at least one original member of the band under whose name they are performing. In other words, a group advertising itself as The Platters must have at least one original Platter among them.
Nike turns that frown upside down
In London, Nike has won an injunction
preventing Australian athletic apparel maker Skins from using the ad shown above which features an interesting use of Nike's swoosh. Nike claims copyright infringement and, apparently, "misuse of our logo." Skins claims it is engaging in comparative advertising. I claim to be a little creeped out by the image.
Step 12. Widgets, widgets, widgets.
How to build your own video sharing network
. Or anything 2.0 for that matter.
Acquiring a Film Library:101
There is good a good reason why we often link to The Hollywood Reporter, Esq.
The reason is because it has fantastic material on both entertainment law and on intellectual property in general. Here is a link to an excellent primer on issues related to acquiring a film library
Insurer Accepts Fair Use Claims From Documentary Filmmakers
, a member of AIG, has begun accepting fair use claims
based on the Documentary Filmmakers’ Statement of Best Practices in Fair Use
(direct link to pdf), when supported with a letter from counsel experienced in copyright law. In recent months, several insurers as well have accepted fair-use claims based on the Statement on a case-by-case basis, after learning about the Statement, which dramatically reduces risk. Lawyers such as Los Angeles-based Michael Donaldson have been crucial in the positive education process that is at the core of the best practices model. Now, leading insurance company National Union has made this consideration routine (without of course abandoning the case-by-case consideration that is core to fair use).
All documentarians should be paying attention to this development as it could have lasting impact on a number of production issues, including the comfort level of investors, and general liability for the production.
The Center for Social Media has a number of other helpful fair use documents located on its site
Wendy Seltzer's DMCA Takedown Notice from the NFL
Legal blogging pay dirt
. (via The Trademark Blog)
A few posts down you will find a link to an excellent article about when not to send a cease and desist letter. Please review.
Citing to Wikipedia
Not good enough for Middlebury College
, still good enough for the PTO.
The Handsome Dick Manitoba Syndrome
Michael Atkins has a good post about trademark issues with band names
. I can say from experience that conflicting band names is a very common problem. It can also be a very sensitive subject when trademark enforcement and the band's credibility clash. Seems like a good time to review when it may not be a good idea to send a cease and desist
. Title reference
Marty Schwimmer reports on the panic-inducing trademark application of the day
SUPER BOWL THE BIG GAME
THE BIG GAME application prosectution history available here
Application was published on January 23, 2007 making the deadline for opposition (or a request for extension to file opposition) is February 23, 2007.
Applicant: NFL Properties LLC
Professor Tom Field's article entitled The Risk Of Buying Trade Secrets
, published in the Pierce Law alumni magazine, is available online
Or = And?
I thought I'd pretty much nailed down when it's best to use "or" versus "and", or vice versa, in contract drafting. Then something like this recent 8th Circuit decision
discussed by Ken Adams
comes along and cooks my noodle all over again.