Copyright

Directive on copyright in the digital single market

The revised proposal for the new Directive on copyright in the Digital Single Market (the “Directive”) has entered its final round of trilogue negotiations (closed door negotiations between the European Parliament, the European Commission and the European Council). The Directive is intended to reform and modernise the EU’s outdated legislation in order to make copyright rules fit for the digital age. The final form of the Directive was agreed last Wednesday.

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Deal or no-deal? Implications for Copyright laws in the event of a no-deal Brexit

This week, the UK Government released multiple technical notes detailing the intellectual property implications of a no-deal Brexit for exhaustion of rights, patents, trademarks and designs, and copyright. A few months ago, the idea of a no-deal Brexit was only entertained as a highly unlikely, ‘worst-case scenario’. This series of notes provides an update on the government’s plan in light of a hard Brexit.

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Filing of a literary work in court proceedings constitutes a breach of the Swedish Copyright Act

The Swedish Patent and Market Court of Appeal have ruled that the act of electronically submitting a short novel to the court as evidence in a court case constitutes an unlawful reproduction of the work and in breach with the Swedish Copyright Act. However, the filing of the work was not considered as a communication to the public or that the work was otherwise distributed to the public. A parent had submitted a private novel/letter …

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SCOTUS invites Solicitor General’s position on copyright registration pre-suit requirement

The Copyright Act (the “Act”) permits copyright holders to bring civil infringement actions in federal district courts to enforce the exclusive rights provided under the Act, namely, the rights to reproduce, distribute, display, publicly perform, and create derivatives of an original work of authorship.  However, an infringement action cannot be brought for a “United States work” until preregistration or registration of the copyright “has been made in accordance with [the Act].”  17 U.S.C. § 411. 

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Athletes’ Right of Publicity Claims Directed to Sports Video Games Not Preempted by Copyright Act

The California federal district court, in Davis v. Electronic Arts Inc., recently issued the latest in a series of decisions involving athletes’ right of publicity (“ROP”) claims aimed at Electronic Arts’ (“EA”) popular sports videogame franchise. The plaintiffs in Davis are retired NFL players and allege that EA violated their publicity rights by using their likenesses in EA’s Madden videogame series without authorization. EA moved to dismiss the operative complaint, arguing that the plaintiffs’ state-based ROP claims were preempted by federal copyright law. On December 11, 2017, the district court denied EA’s motion.

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Follow-us! Audiovisual Finance: the New Italian Cinema Law – DLA Piper Rome, Via dei Due Macelli 66 – 11:00 AM, 6 December 2017

Follow us (Rome, Via dei Due Macelli 66, 6 December 2017, 11:00 AM) for our roundtable on the Decrees implementing the Italian Law no. 220/2016 (“Cinema Law”) and the related investment opportunities concerning audiovisual works (including tax credit, automatic contribution, protection of minors and European works). We will also analyze the financing structures of audiovisual and theatrical works. Our panelists will include producers of audiovisual (Andrea Buonaguidi, Palomar) and theatrical (Federica Lucisano, Gruppo Lucisano) works, …

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Can a TV show format acquire copyright protection?

Many years ago the Courts determined that there was no copyright in the format for the “Opportunity Knocks” game show (see Green v New Zealand Broadcasting Corporation [1989] 2 All ER 1056) and since then several other claims to copyright in TV formats have failed when considered under English law.

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Cinema and audiovisual media services: A wider protection for EU works

On 2 October 2017, the Italian Council of Ministers approved a new Legislative Decree (“Decree“), aimed at ensuring a wider protection to EU (and Italian) works in the audiovisual media services (“AVMS“) sector. A brief outline of the new provisions is set out below. A. The Main Contents of the Decree The Decree amends Article 44 of the Italian AVMS Code (Legislative Decree no. 177/2005 and ff. amendments), setting forth the general framework for the …

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AVMSD reform: Focus on video-sharing platforms

As broadly known, the EU Commission on May 25, 2016 published its proposal for a reform of the audio-visual media services Directive no. 2010/13/EU (“Proposal“, available here).  The Proposal is currently under scrutiny: in particular, the European Parliament’s Committee on Culture and Education on April 25, 2017, voted to amend the Proposal.  The subject matter of this post is constituted by video-sharing platforms. 1. Video-Sharing Platforms: Current Regulatory Framework The Italian AVMS Code – in …

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Filmspeler – Sale of “fully-loaded” IPTV boxes and “unlawful use”

In another welcome decision for content owners and broadcasters, the CJEU has dealt a significant blow to the business models of those individuals looking to profit from the sale of pre-configured media players which provide end-users with hyperlinks to copyright-infringing Internet streams.

In its Filmspeler judgment (available here), the Court followed the opinion of its Advocate General (previously reported here) that the mere sale of media players (such as IPTV/ Kodi boxes) which are pre-configured (or “fully loaded”) to display pirated content itself constitutes a communication to the public, provided certain conditions are met.

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