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A choreographer stated actionable claims for direct and contributory infringement of his copyrighted choreographic work by defendant's virtual animation as part of a video game.  The complaint alleged a plausible similarity between his work's selection and arrangement of choreographic elements--body position, body shape, body actions, transitions, use of space, timing, pauses, energy, canon, motif, contrast, and repetition--and defendant's virtual animation.… Read More

Perfect 10 Inc. v., Inc. (9th Cir. 2007) 508 F.3d 1146 remains good law and applies to all types of websites.  It holds that "embedded" images on a website do not infringe a copyright in the embedded image because the embedding process merely provides instructions to the web browser to go to another website to download the image.  The… Read More

By registering a derivative work, an author registers all of the material included in the derivative work, including that which previously appeared in an unregistered, original work created by the author.  So plaintiff's registration of Chart B which included the elements of Chart A sufficed to obtain a copyright on the elements of Chart A.  Moreover, the author of an… Read More

Plaintiff's use of Andy Warhol's silkscreen prints of defendant's photograph of Prince is not exempt from copyright infringement under the fair use doctrine.  While Andy Warhol transformed the photograph somewhat, the proposed use of his silkscreen as a magazine cover directly competed with defendant's initial use of the photograph for the same purpose.  The direct competition brought the use outside… Read More

Following remand from the US Supreme Court, this decision holds that Unicolors' copyright registration is valid even though the application was incorrect in failing to comply with the "single unit" requirement because Unicolors did not know its application was inaccurate.  The decision rejects all of defendant's other attacks on the judgment, except for reducing damages by half to remove damages… Read More

The trial court correctly denied defendants' Anti-SLAPP motion to strike plaintiff's claims under the UCL and CLRA based on defendants' allegedly false statements in releases or other statements and advertisements that Michael Jackson was the lead artist on all tracks in a posthumous CD.  Even if the defendants' statements were protected speech under CCP 425.16(e), plaintiff showed a probability of… Read More

Reversing a summary judgment in defendant's favor, this decision holds that defendant cannot claim a fair use defense to plaintiff's suit for infringement of its copyright on photos of an ephemeral lake in the Death Valley desert.  All four fair use factors weighed against defendant.  Defendant used the pictures for a commercial purpose--to profit from its article that included the… Read More

Under Fed. R. Civ. P. 4(k)(2), a plaintiff may establish personal jurisdiction over a foreign defendant by (a) alleging a federal law claim against the defendant, (b) showing that the defendant is not subject to personal jurisdiction in any state, and (c) showing that exercise of jurisdiction over the defendant is consistent with due process, considering the defendant's contacts with… Read More

On remand after reversal of an order dismissing the complaint (Sicre De Fontbrune v. Wolfsy (9th Cir. 2016) 838 F.3d 992), this decision reverses a summary judgment in defendant's favor refusing to enforce a French judgment for "astreinte" damages for using photos of Picasso paintings infringing plaintiff's copyright in the photos.  The French judgment that plaintiff sought to enforce was… Read More

Under 17 USC 411(b), a certificate of registration of a copyright is effective and satisfies the registration-before-suit requirement of 411(a) even if the certificate contains inaccurate information unless the applicant submitted the information with knowledge it was inaccurate and Register of Copyrights would have refused registration had it known of the inaccuracy.  Reversing the Ninth Circuit (Gold Value Int'l Textile,… Read More