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First off today, Patricia Hurtado of Bloomberg reports that Google has won at least a small victory in its case against the Authors Guild of America. They’ve won a stay in the case while they appeal the right of the Authors Guild to sue as a class. The Authors Guild is suing Google claiming that the search giant’s Google Book Search product infringes the copyright of the authors they represent and have sought class action status for their case. The two sides had hammered out two settlements, both of which were rejected by the courts as being overreach, prompting the lawsuit to move forward. The Authors Guild did not oppose the stay, which will put the case on hold until the Appeals Court rules.
Next up today, Ben Child at The Guardian reports that James Cameron has emerged victorious over author Elijah Schkeiban in a case over the movie Avatar. Schkeiban had sued Cameron claiming that the movie’s plot was based on a screenplay he had written entitled Bats and Butterflies. The judge, however, tossed the case saying that the two works were not substantially similar and that the shared elements were not copyrightable. This case is just one of many against Cameron over the movie, all of which have failed so far.
Finally today, Jamie Yap of ZDNet writes that, in China, a court has ordered the Chinese search engine Baidu to pay 145,000 yuan ($22,939) in compensation for infringement of their books. Baidu had hosted copies of their books on Wenu, a free download site owned by Baidu. However, the court declined the authors’ request to shut down the site saying there was no valid legal reason to do so. There is no word if either side plans on appealing.
That’s it for the three count today. We will be back tomorrow with three more copyright links. If you have a link that you want to suggest a link for the column or have any proposals to make it better. Feel free to leave a comment or send me an email. I hope to hear from you.
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