3 Count: Dungeoned Dragons

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1: Sweetpea Aims to Stop Universal’s ‘Dungeons and Dragons’ Film

First off today, Eriq Gardner at The Hollywood Reporter Esquire reports that Sweatpea Entertainment has filed counterclaims against Hasbro, claiming that it owns at least some of the film rights to the popular “Dungeons & Dragons” game forever.

The dispute stems from a 1994 agreement between Hasbro and Sweatpea that gave Sweatpea the rights to produce a Dungeons & Dragons movie. In 2000, Sweatpea did just that, releasing a much-maligned film into theaters. Hasbro believes that the film rights reverted back to them after Sweatpea failed to release a sequel within five years but Sweatpea claims that it’s two additional films, both released on the SyFy Channel, met the requirements of the agreement.

Hasbro sued Sweetpea after it learned that it was working with Warner Brothers to create another Dungeons & Dragons film. Hasbro had begun working on another film with Universal Pictures. Sweetpea tried to get that lawsuit dismissed but failed, prompting Sweetpea to now file counterclaims against saying that it has the right to prevent others, even Hasbro, form creating other films based on the title. It also claims that it has rights that never revert back to Hasbro, so even if Hasbro is right about certain elements reverting back to them, they still have other rights they can enforce.

2: Three Strikes Doesn’t Deter Copyright Infringement

Next up today, Josh Taylor at ZDNet reports that Monash University law professor Rebecca Giblin has released a repot that she claims shows that “three strikes” system, also referred to as “graduated response” systems, are not effective at reducing piracy.

Gilblin looked at systems in various countries including South Korea, New Zealand, France and the U.S. Though she couldn’t analyze the effectiveness of the system in the U.S. as it is too new, she determined that there was no evidence of effectiveness of the system and that supposed benefits, such as an increase in iTunes sales in France, could be also attributed to other factors, such as increased iPhone awareness.

Three strikes or graduated response systems typically send warning letters to individuals whose Internet accounts are used for piracy. After a certain number of warnings, the amount varies per country, other actions can be taken including fines and possibly having Internet disabled depending on the particular law.

3: Google Courts Copyright Holders with Promotional Anti-Piracy Brochure

Finally today, Adi Robertson at The Verge reports that Google has released an anti-piracy report/brochure that it hopes will answer allegations from copyright holders that the search giant does not do enough to prevent piracy.

Entitled “How Google Fights Piracy”, the 23-page brochure highlights steps that Google has taken to reduce piracy including the use of ContentID on YouTube, it’s removal of pirate results from the search index and launching of legitimate services, such as the Google Play store.

The move comes after the RIAA released its own report highlighting what it saw were inadequacies in Google’s anti-piracy efforts, saying that Google allows pirate sites to rank well in search result pages, supports pirate sites by providing advertising services and more.


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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