Topic: Copyright

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Is that picture your creation or the AI program’s – an age-old question revisited

The copyright eligibility of computer-generated literature and artistic works is not, contrary to what many may think, a post-millennial question. In a case decided as early as 1985 [1], in a time long before the internet era, the English court had already held that a computer is no more than a tool by which the … Continue reading

Who’s in control? Liability for copyright infringement by contractors and software developers

The High Court recently delivered its decision in Real Estate Tool Box v Campaigntrack 1 relating to copyright authorisation. The High Court held that the appellants, who had engaged a third party software developer to create a real estate marketing system for their use, were not liable for copyright infringement, as they had not authorised the developer’s infringement of Campaigntrack’s … Continue reading

Is “A Change [] Gonna Come”?: Music Publishers Sue AI Startup Anthropic for Copyright Infringement

The Lawsuit Another week, another lawsuit against generative AI.  This time, a group of music publishing companies, including Concord Music Group, Inc., ABCKO Music, Inc., and Universal Music Group (“Plaintiffs”) sued AI start-up Anthropic PBC (“Anthropic”) on October 18, 2023, in the United States District Court for the Middle District of Tennessee “to address the … Continue reading

NFTs and IP – Your opportunity to comment

On November 23, 2022, the US Patent and Trademark Office and the US Copyright Office issued a request for public comment on the subject of Non-Fungible Tokens (NFTs) and intellectual property rights. Comments are due by Monday, January 9, 2023. In addition, the Offices will offer three public roundtables:  one panel on NFTs and patents … Continue reading

Overview of IP Law In Canada – The Intellectual Property Review

The recently published Eleventh Edition of the Intellectual Property Review (the Review) includes a Canadian chapter. Readers are invited to learn more on the various forms of IP protection available in Canada, and highlights of important changes in Canadian IP law over the past year. The chapter was authored by members of the Brand Protection Blog team. The chapter … Continue reading

Copyright Review Board – non-human authors not allowed

On February 14, 2022, the Review Board of the United States Copyright Office (the “Board”) refused copyright registration (for the second time) of a two-dimensional artwork entitled “A Recent Entrance to Paradise.” Although the work was an original work fixed in a tangible medium of expression, the Board found that it could not be registered … Continue reading

Please, sir, I want some more: Orphan works and other copyright law reforms

Late last year, the Australian government released the long-awaited Exposure Draft of the Copyright Amendment (Access Reform) Bill 2021 (Cth) (Bill). The Bill is designed to implement aspects of the Government’s response to the Productivity Commission’s 2016 Inquiry into Intellectual Property Arrangements (on which we reported at the time here and here). As is often … Continue reading

Spotify successfully opposes POTIFY applications based on dilution by blurring

In its first precedential decision of 2022, the Trademark Trial and Appeal Board (“TTAB”) sustained two oppositions filed by Spotify AB (“Spotify”) against registration of POTIFY for use in connection with an online ordering platform and community for medical and recreational cannabis consumers to connect with legal marijuana retailers.  Both oppositions were sustained on Spotify’s … Continue reading

Combatting Online Copyright Infringement

The Internet is a fantastic platform for the widespread dissemination and exchange of works and information.  It is also an increasingly popular medium for infringers to illegally source and share copyrighted materials. Losing control over you work is not only frustrating, it can damage your business or brand.  Fortunately, copyright law prohibits the unauthorized reproduction … Continue reading

Keezio v. The Shrunks: the Cost of a Counterclaim

A recent decision from the BC Supreme Court serves as a reminder both of the risk of getting sued for defamation for publicly alleging copyright infringement, including on Amazon, and also that companies may be required to post security for costs in order to proceed with copyright and other intellectual property (IP) claims. The decision … Continue reading

Canada Consults on Online Copyright Reform

On Wednesday, April 14, 2021, the Canadian government launched a consultation on “a Modern Copyright Framework for Online Intermediaries”, seeking comments from the public until May 31. The goal of this consultation is to “ensure that Canada’s copyright framework for online intermediaries reflects this evolving digital world.” Alongside the announcement of this consultation, the government … Continue reading

GIVE ME ONE REASON (Why I Should Settle this Copyright Infringement Dispute)

Sampling is a popular form of music borrowing, and it is common practice for artists to experiment and create derivative works of an existing song before obtaining a license from the copyright holder. This creative process received significant attention in a copyright infringement dispute brought by singer songwriter, Tracy Chapman, against rapper, Onika Tanya Maraj … Continue reading

Stuff of folklore: the sale of Taylor Swift’s masters

Scooter Braun and Ithaca Holding’s recent acquisition of the record label Big Machine Records and, most importantly, the master recordings of Taylor Swift’s first 6 albums is no love story. Indeed, Scooter Braun’s subsequent USD $300 million sale of these masters to the Disney family founded private equity firm, Shamrock Capital, has Ms. Swift seeing … Continue reading

China quietly updates its Copyright Law

On 11 November 2020, the Standing Committee of the National People’s Congress passed the amendments to the China Copyright Law (the Amendments), which will take effect on 1 June 2021. This is the third time the Copyright Law has been amended since it was promulgated in 1990. The first comprehensive amendment took place in 2001, … Continue reading

Where the Rubber Hits the Road: Damages for Canadian E-Commerce Copyright Infringement

In Rallysport Direct LLC v 2424508 Ontario Ltd, 2020 FC 794, the Canadian Federal Court awarded $357,500 in statutory damages and $50,000 in punitive damages for infringement of copyright in 1,430 photographs. Background Rallysport Direct LLC (RSD) is a wholesaler and direct-to-consumer supplier of aftermarket automotive components and accessories. It sells its products on its … Continue reading

Insights from the Australian Intellectual Property Report 2020

Intellectual Property (IP) Australia published their 2020 edition of the Australian IP Report (the IP Report) on 24 April 2020. The IP Report, which can be accessed here, provides a current overview of the IP sector in Australia and the latest data on the IP rights (IPR) administered by IP Australia. Reports such as the … Continue reading

Courts Across Canada Continue Reopening Plans

Please see our updated version of this article, published July 10, 2020. Update – Response from Canadian Courts to COVID-19 As many Canadian jurisdictions begin to relax certain social distancing measures, it is time for an update on the status of the courts across Canada. As with the rest of us, the courts across Canada … Continue reading

Canadian Court Openings Begin – Closure Updates May 1

Please see our updated version of this article, published July 10, 2020. As a further update to our post earlier this week, the Federal Court and British Columbia Supreme Court issued updated notices, and Quebec has extended its declaration of a state of health emergency until May 6, 2020. We will continue to provide updates … Continue reading

Government edicts doctrine precludes legislators from claiming copyright protection

In a 5-4 decision, the United States Supreme Court held in Georgia et al v. Public.Resource.Org., Inc. (No. 18-1150) (April 27, 2020) that the state of Georgia is not entitled to copyright protection for its official annotated code. The Copyright Act grants expansive rights for “original works of authorship.” 17 U.S.C. § 102(a). Georgia claimed … Continue reading
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