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First off today, Eriq Gardner at The Hollywood Reporter writes that 3D illustrator Raymond Downing is suing A&E Television Networks, which owns The History Channel, as well as a production company alleging that they infringed his copyright in 3D renditions of Abraham Lincoln and Jesus. According to Downing, the network misled him as to the nature of the program one of the works would be used in, saying that it was scientific in nature, and also used the works beyond what the license allows. Downing is suing for copyright infringement, breach of contract, unjust enrichment, breach of fair dealing and fraud. He’s seeking both actual and compensatory damages.
Next up today, Lisa Shuchman at Law.com writes that an upcoming case before the Supreme Court in the U.S. is being watched very closely by museums. The case, Kirtsaeng v. John Wiley & Sons deals with textbooks that were legally (and cheaply) bought overseas and sold in the U.S. at lower prices on eBay. Wiley, a book publisher, claimed that was an infringement of their right to block importation of copyrighted works and that right of first sale, the right of a consume to resell legally-purchased goods, did not apply to imported copyrighted works. Museums, however, are worried that a ruling in favor of Wiley could impact them as they routinely purchase works overseas for display and public display is a right reserved to the copyright holder. This means, theoretically, if copyright holders can control importation of legally-purchased works, museums could be infringers as well. Wiley won at the appellate court level and Kirtsaeng is hoping the Supreme Court will overturn that verdict.
Finally today, Will Chavez of the Cherokee Phoenix reports that artists who sell copyrighted works to the Cherokee Nation will have better protection of their copyright. Under a proposed amendment to the Native American Arts and Crafts Copyright Act of 2007, the Cherokee Nation will be forbidden from compelling artists who sell their work to also sign over their copyright. Though it was not previously required, some artists were compelled to do so, causing many to raise concerns about the process of acquiring copyrighted works. The amendment will likely be voted on at the next Tribal Council meeting on Nov. 12 and, if passed, will take effect 30 days after that.
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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