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First off today, Eriq Gardner at The Hollywood Reporter Esquire reports that the 2nd Circuit Court of Appeals has ruled in favor of playwright Jamie Keeling in his lawsuit against a theater company that he claims infringed upon his parody of the 1991 film Point Break.
The film, which starred Keanu Reeves as a police officer going undercover as a surfer, has been subject to so much ridicule that Keeling decided to create a parody play based on it. The play featured the idea of calling up a random member of the audience to recite Keanu’s lines. However, the production company behind the parody stopped paying Keeling and created its own version.
When Keeling protested, the company claimed that, since his version was based on the movie, he didn’t have copyright protection. However, in 2012, a lower court ruled that he did have copyright protection over the new elements he introduced and a jury handed down a $250,000 verdict against the production company. The company then appealed the 2nd Circuit and the appeals court has upheld the ruling.
Net up today, the BBC reports that US R&B singer Jesse Braham has filed a $42 million lawsuit against Taylor Swift alleging that Swift lifted lyrics from his song Haters Gone Hate for her hit song Shake it Off.
According to Braham, he used the lines “Haters gone hate, playas gone play” both of which appear in the chorus of Swift’s song. He said that he tried to speak with Swift’s label about the issue repeatedly and received no response.
Braham, in addition to the monetary damages, is also seeking a songwriter credit. Swift nor her label have responded to the lawsuit.
Finally today, Kevin Green at WWLP reports that a Norfolk, VA artist, Kelsie McNair, has filed a lawsuit against Target and a Chinese manufacturer for copyright infringement of cell phone case designs she created using flowers.
According to McNair, she creates custom cellphone covers that are decorated with flowers. Two of those designs, Lemon and Honey and Morning Dew are being sold by target under the store’s Menora brand.
McNair claims too ave filed for copyright protection on the work earlier this year and to have first seen the similar cases in Washington before later seeing them in Targets in Virginia and online. The lawsuit seeks an injunction barring the sale of the cases and $300,000 in damages.
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.