Category Archives: Copyright

Pop-Up Infringement

The animated television series “SpongeBob SquarePants” on Viacom’s Nickelodeon network is about a sponge who lives in a pineapple under the sea, and works at the fictional The Krusty Krab restaurant. Viacom licenses The Krusty Krab to third parties for products such as Krusty Krab playsets from The LEGO Company. Pixi Universal, LLC operates “pop-up” […]

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“Suggested By” Top Guns’ Copyright Termination Notice

An author (or their heirs) may terminate a copyright assignment, or other transfer, under section 203(a) of the Copyright Act, 17 U.S.C. §§ 101, et seq. Depending on when the copyrighted work is published or not, an author may serve a notice of termination within a specific window of time at the end of thirty-five […]

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Entrapment as Copyright Misuse, Plausible or Frivolous?

“Copyright misuse is an equitable defense to copyright infringement which precludes the copyright holder’s enforcement of its copyright during the misuse period.” Vernor v. Autodesk, Inc., 621 F.3d 1102, 1115 (9th Cir. 2010); Practice Mgmt. Info. Corp. v. Am. Med. Ass’n, 121 F.3d 516, 520 n. 9 (9th Cir. 1997). It is analogous to the equitable […]

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Oh, Mickey, No Joint Author

Under the Copyright Act, a “‘joint work’ is a work prepared by two or more authors with the intention that their contributions be merged into inseparable or interdependent parts of a unitary whole.” 17 U.S.C. § 101. An “author” is “the party who actually creates the work, that is, the person who translates an idea into […]

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Copyright Office Says No to AI as an Author

By James Juo. The academic debate as to whether artificial intelligence (“AI”) can be an “author” of  creative works for purposes of copyright is becoming less academic. Advocates of AI exceptionalism argue that AI is able to make functionally creative output in the absence of a traditional human author and AI-generated works should be protectable under […]

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