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First off today, Eriq Gardner at The Hollywood Reporter Esquire reports that Stan Lee Media Inc. (SLMI), which no longer has any association with Stan Lee himself, has lost yet another round in their ongoing litigation against Stan Lee and Disney, this time with the 10th Circuit declining to revive a lawsuit against their namesake.
SLMI was founded by Stan Lee to create new works based on characters he had created previously including Iron Man, The Hulk and Spider-Man. However, the company went bankrupt in 2001 and Stan Lee transferred away the rights during the bankruptcy proceedings. SLMI has since repeatedly sued Stan Lee over the transfer and Marvel Comics, now owned by Disney, for copyright infringement for its recent uses of the characters.
After a defeat in the 9th Circuit, SLMI tried it’s luck in the 10th Circuit against Stan Lee but this court too has upheld a lower court ruling saying that SLMI does not have control over the characters and that it’s arguments stating as such as implausible. This is the latest of many rulings against SLMI, none of which have deterred the company from continuing to file lawsuits.
Next up today, Dave McNary at Variety reports that the Directors Guild of America (DGA) and the Writers Guild of America (WGA) have both extended their agreement with the MPAA that has them handle disbursement of funds collected from foreign levies.
The agreements were set to expire at the end of the year and cover funds collected outside the U.S. as part of the levy programs in many states. Since other nations have rules that protect the right of individuals authors in a work, including the directors and authors, the funds have to be sent to the individuals behind the move. However, in the U.S. their rights an interest are given up to the company.
Both the DGA and the WGA have been sued in the past for inadequate handling of these funds. The DGA settled its suit in 2008 and the WGA signed a consent degree in 2010 requiring it to attempt to pay all funds within three years. So far the two organizations have disburse some $310 million to individual directors and writers. Those deals have been extended until 2017.
Finally today, Tyler Lee at Ubergizmo reports that those who choose to pirate Croteam’s latest game, The Talos Principle, may be in for an ugly surprise.
According to reports, those who pirate the game find themselves stuck in an elevator at one point in the game. When a user complained about the bug on a forum, the Croteam announced that it was part of their anti-piracy efforts.
The move isn’t the first creative anti-piracy strategy Croteam has taken. In 2011 for its game Serious Sam 3 the company punished pirates by having them stalked by an invincible giant pink scorpion that would make progress in the game impossible.
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.