Topic: Copyright

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UPDATE: Canadian Intellectual Property Office further extends all deadlines to May 1st

In response to the continuing disruption caused by the COVID-19 outbreak,  the Canadian Intellectual Property Office (CIPO) has announced on March 27, 2020 a further extension for filing deadlines  – all deadlines ending in the month of April 2020 will automatically be extended to May 1, 2020. Parties in proceedings before the Trademarks Opposition Board should … Continue reading

Allen v. Cooper: Supreme Court Confirms States Can Not Be Sued For Copyright Infringement

In an unanimous ruling, the United States Supreme Court held that copyright owners cannot sue states for copyright infringement when states have copied or made use of their works without their consent. Sovereign immunity shields the states from any such claims and Congress’ attempt to abrogate that immunity in the Copyright Remedy Clarification Act of … Continue reading

Response from Canadian Courts to COVID-19

We know you have a lot to think about and plan right now and over the next few weeks. You can rely on us to keep your intellectual property litigation matters  moving forward.  To that end, we wanted to provide an update on the measures courts across Canada are taking to combat the spread of … Continue reading

UPDATE ON COVID-19 : CIPO announces extensions in wake of outbreak in Canada

Given the many challenges faced by all businesses in dealing with the COVID-19 outbreak, the Canadian Intellectual Property Office (CIPO) has advised that it will relax filing deadlines for the remainder of March 2020.  This decision was first announced on March 16, 2020 and further updated yesterday, March 19, 2020. What you need to know All … Continue reading

U.S. Copyright Office: New Fees and New Technologies

If your business discovered that its revenue covered only 70% of its costs, it would be time for a re-examination of operations, both in terms of revenues and costs. The Copyright Office has issued some rule changes affecting both. New Fees According to the U.S. Copyright Office’s notice in the February 19, 2020 Federal Register … Continue reading

Stranger than Sci-Fi: Can (and should) Artificial Intelligence machines own intellectual property?

Artificial Intelligence, or AI, refers to the capability of a machine to imitate intelligent human behaviour. Though it sounds like something out of a sci-fi film, the reality is that AI is quickly becoming a norm in our everyday lives, from the simple AI systems used to sort email inboxes, to complex AI systems known … Continue reading

Securing a Site-blocking Order in Canada: Sure! But how?

The Federal Court has recently issued an order compelling Internet service providers (ISPs) to block their customers from accessing pirate subscription streaming sites operated by anonymous defendants. Although Bell Media Inc. v. GoldTV.Biz, 2019 FC 1432 is the first decision of its kind in Canada, the Court held that site-blocking orders fall squarely within its … Continue reading

Unauthorized Reproduction of Online Content Proves Costly

Earlier this year, the Federal Court awarded damages of $20 million for the unauthorized reproduction of obituaries online. That decision, Thomson v. Afterlife Network Inc., 2019 FC 545, demonstrates that severe penalties are available against online operators who infringe copyright for commercial purposes. Background Afterlife, an online website that reproduces obituaries, launched in 2017. Afterlife reproduced over … Continue reading

Fakes welcome? IP protection lags behind for Indigenous artworks in Australia

In a symbolic win for Indigenous artists, the Federal Court of Australia has recently ordered a seller of fake Indigenous-style souvenirs to pay AU$2.3 million in pecuniary penalties for contraventions of the misleading and deceptive conduct provisions of the Australian Consumer Law (ACL). While the Court’s ruling appears to be a positive move in the … Continue reading

Internet (almost) killed the video star: Federal Court grants orders to block ‘ripping’ of music videos

In the age of the internet, music videos have persisted on MTV and numerous other television outlets although they have to an extent been challenged by other forms of high-brow entertainment available. Many of them involve house inspections or the rituals of courtships, and sometimes both. Nevertheless, despite these diversions, the Rage is maintained. Justice … Continue reading

Copyright, “fair use,” and educational institutions

On May 23, 2019, a federal jury unanimously found that the Houston Independent School District willfully infringed 36 of DynaStudy’s copyrighted study guides, and awarded $9.2 million dollars. (DynaStudy, Inc. v. Houston Independent School District, Case No. 4:16-cv-01442 (S.D. Tex. May 23, 2019) (verdict, document #316). As this case illustrates, “educational” use is a very … Continue reading

Shifting Paradigms – A new report for the future of copyright in Canada

Over the past year the House Heritage Committee has been preparing its Shifting Paradigms report which was released in May 2019. The report considers and discusses some of the current challenges and possible solutions pertaining to the ecosystem in which artists work. It also speaks to reinvigorating copyright in Canada. This report is of interest … Continue reading

What lessons can be drawn from the approval of the Directive on Copyright in the digital single market ?

On Monday 15 April 2019, the Council of the EU formally approved the Directive on Copyright in the digital single market which was adopted by the European Parliament on Tuesday 26 March 2019. According to the European Commission, the objective of this Directive is to establish a global framework, within which intellectual creations, authors, content … Continue reading

Are you kicking goals when it comes to social media activity, or heading to the sin bin?

They say that a picture tells a thousand words.  But as became apparent in Australia recently, posting a picture on social media can result in a thousand (derogatory and sexist) words. A photograph posted on Twitter by Seven AFL (taken by photographer Michael Wilson), resulted in Australian female AFLW star, Taylor Harris, hitting all the … Continue reading

Copyright vs Freedom of the Internet: Round 1 just passed the European Parliament

At the end of last month, the European Union Parliament adopted a controversial new “Directive on Copyright in the Digital Single Market” (Directive). One of the stated aims of the Directive is to give copyright holders such as musicians, artists, performers and authors greater bargaining power against tech giants like Google, YouTube and Facebook in … Continue reading

No safe harbour: Online platforms face choppy waters when it comes to copyright infringement

The liability of internet intermediaries for copyright infringement is a hot topic of conversation at the moment, both in Australia and overseas. Sweeping reforms have just been passed by the EU Parliament, and Australian copyright legislation in this area has been the subject of significant judicial consideration in recent years. In this article, we consider … Continue reading

Canada: Further trademark amendments are here — Bill C-86 is given Royal Assent

Canada’s core IP statutes have been amended by Bill C-86, which received Royal Assent as the Budget Implementation Act, 2018, No. 2, SC 2018, c 27 on December 14, 2018. The final version of the legislation includes amendments to the Trade-marks Act that are substantially identical to the version that received first reading on October … Continue reading

Recent developments for IPR protection in China

On November 5th 2018, at the inauguration ceremony of the first-ever China International Import Expo held in Shanghai, President Xi Jinping reassured investors, especially foreign enterprises, on the administration’s determination to protect their intellectual property rights in China. In the speech, President Xi announced that in order to significantly increase the cost of infringing IPR … Continue reading

Bill C-86 — significant changes to Canada’s IP regime

The federal government’s recent omnibus budget bill, Bill C-86 tabled October 29th, 2018, proposes significant changes to Canada’s IP laws. Division 7 of the Bill is intended to implement many aspects of the government’s IP strategy announced in April 2018, and targets the Patent Act, the Trade-marks Act, and Copyright Act; provides for a new … Continue reading

Wolverhampton Wanderers

Wolves bare their fangs over copyright infringement claim You’d think that newly promoted Wolverhampton Wanderers would have enough on their plate just ensuring survival in the Premiership. Unfortunately, the club now has another worry given that it has been sued in the intellectual property courts in London by an individual who claims copyright in the … Continue reading

Copyright, cryptocurrency and video games

Video games, such as Grand Theft Auto®, remain popular around the globe, and two recent matters made headlines on two different aspects of the games: copyright and cryptocurrency. Copyright On August 16, 2018, the federal trial court in Manhattan issued a ruling in a case involving the video game “Grand Theft Auto V” (“GTAV”) and … Continue reading

Amended Australian IP laws receive Royal Assent with little fanfare

On 24 August 2018, the creatively named Intellectual Property Laws Amendment (Productivity Commission Response Part 1 and Other Measures) Bill 2018 quietly received Royal Assent, with some parts of the new Act entering into force the following day. As the name indicates, the primary focus of the new legislation is to implement the recommendations made … Continue reading

Public laws, private standards and copyright “fair use”

On July 17, 2018, the federal appeals court located in Washington, D.C. issued a ruling in a case involving an intersection of copyrighted material (standards) and non-copyrightable material (laws and regulations). The appeals court remanded the matter back to the trial court, to determine under what circumstances a non-profit organization could publish private standards as … Continue reading
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