Web hosters ordered to pay $32M for contributing to trademark infringement

1 09 2009

[Ed: this is interesting in that it helps show that there are limits to ISP & site host immunities]

A federal jury in California has found two Web hosting companies and their owner liable for contributing to trademark and copyright infringement for hosting sites selling counterfeit Louis Vuitton goods.

In a verdict handed down last week, the jury assessed damages totaling more than $32 million against hosting companies Akanoc Solutions Inc., Managed Solutions Group Inc., both in Fremont, Calif., and Steven Chen, the owner of the two companies. In awarding the damages, the jury agreed with Paris-based Louis Vuitton Malletier S.A.’s claims that the defendants knowingly allowed several Web sites they hosted to sell products that infringed Louis Vuitton’s copyrights and trademarks.

For the complete article, click here.

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Complaint Alleging Trade Dress In Software

1 09 2009

Fidelity sues defendant for copyright infringement and trade dress in software.

Decision in a W.D. Washington website trade dress case here.

Complaint Trade Dress Software

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Jammie Thomas slams $1.92 million P2P verdict as “arbitrary”

31 08 2009

Jammie Thomas-Rasset, who was hit with a $1.92 million damage award earlier this year for sharing songs through peer-to-peer networks, has again asked the judge in the case to reduce the damage amount on the grounds that it is simply plucked from the air. What kind of “due process” did she receive during her two trials when the first jury fined her nearly $10,000 per song and the second jury chose $80,000 per song?

“The concerns that trigger the due process inquiry—arbitrariness, variability, and unpredictability in awards—are here in spades; of this, the nearly order-of-magnitude difference between the verdicts in the first and second trials of Mrs. Thomas is unquestionable evidence,” say her lawyers in a new court brief. “An arbitrary award imposed pursuant to a statute is still arbitrary.”

Read the rest of this article...



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Updates on Perfect 10 v Google

29 08 2009

http://news.justia.com/cases/featured/california/cacdce/2:2004cv09484/167815/#20090809

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E-reserve copyright lawsuit updates

29 08 2009

Cambridge University Press v. Patton is a publishers’ suit against a public university that makes electronic copies of course readings available to students without paying royalty fees. #copyright Court docs courtesy of Justia. http://news.justia.com/cases/featured/georgia/gandce/1:2008cv01425/150651/

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Music publishers sue lyrics wiki

29 08 2009

Claims of direct, contributory, vicarious and inducement of copyright infringement filed against a lyrics wiki which allegedly scrapes hundreds of thousands of lyrics and redistributes via facebook and other sites.  Stanford Fair Use and Justia feature the court documents including the Aug 24th complaint here: Peermusic v Motive Force
http://news.justia.com/cases/featured/pennsylvania/pawdce/2:2009cv01137/93731/

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Mininova ordered to purge all links to copyrighted files

26 08 2009

Fresh off a set of legal wins against The Pirate Bay, the music and movie industries have just scored another court victory against the massive BitTorrent search engine Mininova. A Dutch judge in Utrecht has given Mininova three months to purge all links to copyrighted content from its site—or pay up to €5 million in penalties.

As with The Pirate Bay, Mininova’s operators weren’t accused of copyright infringement. In a peer-to-peer system, the actual files being transferred reside on millions of computers around the globe, and thus any direct infringement would be the responsibility of those users. But, like most countries, the Netherlands recognizes “contributory copyright infringement,” which was the charge in this case.

Read the rest of this article...



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The Beat Goes On: In SCO v. Novell, Tenth Circuit Remands UNIX Copyright Ownership Issue for Trial

25 08 2009

The Tenth Circuit has ruled in the closely watched SCO v. Novell appeal, and while it upheld a judgment in favor of Novell for royalties due from The SCO Group, the appeals court remanded for a trial on the issue of ownership of the copyrights in the UNIX code that is at the heart of SCO’s copyright litigation against IBM over its contribution of code to the Linux operating system.

The SCO v. Novell case is one of a complicated series of litigations that commenced in 2003 when SCO claimed that copyrights in the UNIX code that it acquired as a result of a transaction with Novell in 1995 were infringed by IBM and users of the Linux OS.

more


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Google Book “Settlement” is Bad for Law, Copyright owners and Users

25 08 2009

Raymond Nimmer:

Many have asked my opinion of the Google Settlement. I join the broad opposition to the “settlement”: This is a bad deal for everyone other than for Google (which will become an entrenched monopoly). It is also bad precedent, taking legislative prerogatives, the property rights of millions of people, and important commercial choices, and placing them in the hands of a few lawyers, a few companies, non-representative organizations, and a judge.

more

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Online Retailer Isn’t Liable for User Comments–Cornelius v. DeLuca

24 08 2009

By Eric Goldman

Cornelius v. DeLuca, 2009 WL 2568044 (E.D. Mo. Aug. 18, 2009)

DeLuca runs bodybuilding.com, a fitness website and online retailer. The plaintiffs sell dietary supplements (“syntrax,” whatever that is). The plaintiffs allege that their competitors posted shill reviews to bodybuilding.com designed to harm the plaintiffs’ business. The plaintiffs sued both bodybuilding.com and the putative shillers. This ruling deals only with bodybuilding.com’s liability.

more

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