3 Count: Evidently Denied

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1: Megaupload’s Dotcom Loses Case to Access Extradition Evidence

First off today, Naomi Tajitsu at Fox Business reports that Kim Dotcom has lost his bid to access more of the evidence against him in his effort to avoid extradition to the United States on charges of criminal copyright infringement and money laundering.

Dotcom was arrested in January 2012 after his site, Megaupload, was shuttered in a joint United States/New Zealand action. The U.S. has sought extradition of Dotcom from New Zealand but the process has dragged on, in part due to Dotcom wanting more access to the evidence against him, evidence the U.S. says it isn’t obligated to give until he is on U.S. soil.

The Supreme Court of New Zealand agrees with this, saying that the U.S. only has to give Dotcom the summary of the evidence against him and any evidence that may help his case. Since there is no evidence that the U.S. has withheld anything pertinent from him, the court ruled against Dotcom. However, Dotcom has said he may use information request acts in the country to access any evidence already shared with the New Zealand government.

2: James Cameron Stacking Up Wins in ‘Avatar’ Copyright Lawsuits

Next up today, Eriq Gardner at The Hollywood Reporter Esquire reports that James Cameron has won yet another lawsuit over his hit film Avatar, making it the fourth such case he has won.

This claim came from Emil Malek, who claimed that the film bore a strong resemblance to a screenplay he wrote, Terra Incognita. However, unlike the other cases, Malek has decided to drop the case without waiting for a court ruling, saying that, after listening to testimony as part of a motion on summary judgment, he is convinced that Avatar was independently created.

Other such claims against Cameron have largely been tossed out by the courts for lack of evidence or lack of copyrightable similarities.

3: Photographer Who Snapped Desmond Howard’s ’91 Heisman TD Pose Wins Ruling in Copyright Fight

Finally today, Click On Detroit reports that photographer Brian Masck has overcome a hurdle in his bid to sue Sports Illustrated, Nissan, Amazon, Wal-Mart and more over a photograph he took in 1991 that featured Michigan football player Desmond Howard striking the Heisman Trophy pose after a touchdown.

The defendants in the case said that Masck was ineligible for statutory damages because he waited until 2011 to register his photograph and much of the infringement took place before then. However, the judge denied a summary judgment on the issue, saying that it was a question of material fact as to when the infringements took place and, as such, should be an issue for a trial.

The parties in the case have been in a settlement discussions and the next hearing is schedule for April 1st.


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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