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First off today, Eriq Gardner at The Hollywood Reporter Esquire reports that the lawsuit over the use of NBA players’ tattoos in a video game has survived a motion to dismiss and is now one step closer to a trial.
The lawsuit was filed by Solid Oak Sketches, which has acquired the rights from tattoo artists who worked on various NBA superstars including LeBron James, Eric Bledsoe and Kenyon Martin. Solid Oak Sketches sued the video game publisher Take-Two claiming copyright infringement for the use of those tattoos in the NBA 2K video game series.
Take-Two had filed a motion to dismiss saying that the use of the use of the tattoos was de minimis (too small for the court to concern itself with) or a fair use. However, the judge has declined to dismiss the case at this point saying that more fact finding is needed. As such, the case will move forward, but it is still very early in the proceedings and it is still likely that the case will never make it to trial.
Next up today, Ernesto at Torrentfreak writes that Google has banned the term “Kodi” from its autocomplete feature, which means it will not come up as a recommended search for when people are looking for other content.
Kodi is an open source platform that is used to build set top boxes akin to Apple TVs or Fire TVs. However, though Kodi itself doesn’t have infringing elements, it’s commonly used to install “add-ons” that let users access infringing material. Such devices are often sold as “fully loaded” Kodi boxes that come with those add-ons pre-installed.
Google removing Kodi from autocomplete doesn’t prevent users from searching for the term, but it does mean it won’t be recommended for them. Google has taken similar steps against piracy-oriented websites, such as The Pirate Bay, as well as searches related to “pornography, violence and hate speech” according to Google.
Finally today, Jeff Zillgitt and Sam Amick at USA Today report that LeBron James and his media company Uninterrupted have sent a letter to the University of Alabama football program expressing concerns over the teams new video series Shop Talk.
According to the letter, Shop Talk, a TV show that features Alabama players and coaches having a discussion in a barbershop, is too close to Uninterrupted’s show The Shop, which has a similar premise. According to the letter, Shop Talk is, “is clearly using the ideas, concepts and format previously created and exploited by Uninterrupted.”
As of this writing, The Shop has only released two episodes and Shop Talk has not released any, though a teaser of the episode was recently placed on Twitter. Uninterrupted is demanding a fully copy of the episode so they can review it and “have a conversation” about how to address their concerns. The University of Alabama has not responded to the letter yet.
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.