Law to Improve Copyright Office Functions Signed

The “Copyright Cleanup, Clarification, and Corrections Act of 2010″ (S. 3689) was signed by the President on December 9, 2010, and became Public Law 111-295. The purpose of the law is to clarify, improve, and correct the laws relating to copyrights. It amends copyright law to promote the use of electronic information by the Copyright […]

Minnesota Mom Again Ordered to Pay Over $1 Million for File Sharing

In a third trial, a federal jury has again found that a Minnesota mother of four owes $1.5 million for downloading and sharing 24 copyrighted songs over the Internet. In June of 2009, the convicted file-sharer was ordered to pay $1.92 million in damages–$80,000 for each of the 24 shared songs. However, last January, the […]

Paper Towel Dispenser Mark Not Infringed by Competitor

A manufacturer of paper towels and touchless paper towel dispensers under the brand name “enMotion” could not go forward with claims that a competitor engaged in contributory trademark infringement by marketing and selling to distributors a less-expensive paper towel product that was specifically manufactured to work in eMotion dispensers, the U.S. Court of Appeals in […]

Employee Acted in Bad Faith by Holding Domain "for Ransom"

A designer, manufacturer, and importer of men’s clothing was entitled to an award of $152,000 in damages from a former employee for violating the Anticybersquatting Consumer Protection Act, the U.S. Court of Appeals in San Francisco has held. The domain name for the designer’s website – –had been registered under the employee’s name. The site […]

U.S. Supreme Court Requests Response in Music Downloading Case

In a move indicating its interest in a music downloading case, the U.S. Supreme Court asked a record company to respond to a petition for certiorari asking the Court to decide whether “the inadvertent innocent infringer defense to copyright infringement should be eliminated for all Internet music downloading.” The record company, which had initially waived […]

Ninth Circuit Finds First Sale Does Not Apply to Used Software Programs

The U.S. Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit has sided with the computer software industry and ruled that the first-sale doctrine does not apply to used software programs. Accordingly, the appeals court overturned the federal district court decision that allowed an online software reseller to resell second-hand software programs he purchased at garage and […]

Exemptions to Prohibition on Circumvention of Technological Measures

The Librarian of Congress has published a final rule announcing that the prohibition against circumvention of technological measures that effectively control access to copyrighted works shall not apply to persons who engage in noninfringing uses of the following six classes of copyrighted works: Motion pictures on DVDs that are lawfully made and acquired and that […]

Right to Use Internet Anonymously Not a License to Infringe

A subpoena served on an Internet service provider (a university) to learn the identity of an Internet user (a student), who allegedly downloaded and distributed music to the public via an online file-sharing network, was properly enforced by a magistrate judge, the U.S. Court of Appeals in New York City held. The user’s “modest” First […]

Rights Groups Support Effort to Quash Subpoenas to ID Internet Users

The American Civil Liberties Union (ACLU), the Electronic Frontier Foundation (EFF), and the Pubic Citizen Litigation Group filed “friend-of-the-court” briefs on June 3 in support of a motion by Time Warner Cable to quash subpoenas seeking the names and contact information of thousands of Internet users alleged to have illegally downloaded copyrighted movies on file-sharing […]

Ninth Circuit to Hear Arguments Over First-Sale Right to Sell CDs

The Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals will hear arguments on June 7, 2010, over whether an individual infringed a record company’s copyright by reselling the company’s promotional CDs on eBay (UMG v. Augusto, 2010 Copyright Law Decisions ¶29,920). The CDs, which had been handed out to music reviewers, had a label that read “for PROMOTIONAL […]