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First off today, Marc Schneider at Billboard reports that rapper Jay Z filed a motion to dismiss a lawsuit by TufAmerica over an alleged unlicensed sample in his song “Run This Town” claiming that the sample size, just one syllable, is de minimis and not infringing.
TufAmerica has earned a reputation for acquiring the rights to classic songs and then using new technology to detect mordern artists who used unlicensed samples from them. They previously sued Jay Z alleging that “Run This Town” used an unlicensed sample from “Hook & Sling” by Eddie Bo.
However, Jay Z is claiming that, the alleged sample, the word “oh” from the song, which was repeated throughout the Jay Z song, isn’t proprietary to Bo’s work and, if it is, its use would not qualify as copyright infringement. The motion does not argue that the sample is fair use, but rather that it is simply too small to be infringing.
Next up today, Nick Budnick at The Oregonian reports that database service provider Oracle has filed a copyright infringement lawsuit against the state of Oregon over the states failed healthcare exchange, alleging that Oregon has continues to use software it helped develop but without paying for it.
The lawsuit is part of a much larger legal battle between the two. Oregon, in its bid to create a state healthcare exchange as part of the Affordable Care Act, contracted with Oracle (and others) to build the system. However, after over $250 million spent, the exchange failed to work and the state was forced to use the Federal exchange instead.
Oracle has sued for $23 million that they allege is unpaid while Oregon is also suing alleging that Oracle lied about the quality of its work. However, the two sides have been fighting over jurisdiction, with the state wanting a state court and Oracle wanting a federal one. Oracle is hoping that, by filing the copyright lawsuit, that it will be able to move the case to a federal court as copyright is a federal law with no state equivalent.
Finally today, Ernesto at Torrentfreak writes that Grande Communications is asking a court to examine the practices of Rightscorp and both award them attorneys fees for legal expenses and consider possible sanctions.
Rightscorp is an anti-piracy company that uses a variety of methods to contact suspected file sharers in an attempt to obtain small settlements. The company used DMCA subpoenas to try and compel Grande to turn over the identities of hundreds of thousands of IP/timestamp combinations but Grande declined to comply, stating that DMCA subpoenas, as per earlier court rulings, didn’t apply to file sharing cases.
After Grande fought back against the subpoenas, Rightscorp withdrew its request. However, Grande is now asking the court to examine the request both so it can receive its legal costs back and for possible sanctions. Righscorp had previously said that it was aware of the earlier court rulings but felt that they would be overturned when challenged, which they were eager to do.
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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