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First off today, Eriq Gardner at The Hollywood Reporter Esquire reports that a California judge has issued a summary judgment against a mobile game developer that created a version of the Star Wars card game Sabacc.
The card game Sabacc was wholly fictional, existing only in dialog in the Star Wars franchise and was best known for how Han Solo won the Millennium Falcon. However, Ren Ventures LTD created a mobile game that lets users play the card game. Lucasfilm filed a lawsuit claiming copyright infringement but Ren challenged multiple aspects of the lawsuit including asking what registered material pertained to the game itself and whether the prevalence of Star Wars gifs and memes meant that Lucasfilm had surrendered its copyright interests/
The judge. however, disagreed with those arguments. He handed Lucasfilm a summary judgment ruling that the registered DVDs were adequate to prove Lucasfilm’s ownership and timely registration of the material at issue. Furthermore, the judge ruled that the game is not a fair use of Star Wars materials. As such, the judge ruled against Ren but left open the question of whether the infringement was innocent, setting the stage for a possible jury trial on that issue.
Next up today, Melissa Nightingale at the New Zealand herald reports that, in New Zealand, the National Party is appealing a judgment that ordered them to pay $600,000 ($405,000 US) to musician Eminem and his publisher Eight Mile Style.
The lawsuit was over the National Party’s use of a song entitled Eminem Esque in one of their political ads. The song, which was designed emulate the sound of Eminem, was ruled to be so close to the Eminem song Lose Yourself that it was a copyright infringement. Given how rarely Eminem allowed his music to be in commercials, the court ruled that the National Party owed him $600,000 in damages.
However, the National Party says that amount is unfair and overly licensor-centric. According to the party, they had other songs that they could have used and that the run of the campaign was limited to just 11 days. As such, they feel the amount should be lowered.
Finally today, Gabriella Palella at The Cut reports that a judge has dismissed a copyright lawsuit against author Emma Cline that was filed by her ex-boyfriend, Chaz Reetz-Laiolo.
The lawsuit has been an expecially contentious one with Cline making allegations of abuse and Reetz-Laiolo claiming that Cline used key-logging software to gain access to his computer. That’s how he claims Cline accessed a story he was working on and then, according to him, used it to create her hit novel The Girls.
The judge, however, has dismissed the copyright portion of the lawsuit, saying that there are no substantial similarities between the works involve. The judge also dismissed one of Cline’s allegations over domestic violence. However, the hacking allegations and three of the domestic violence allegations are still pending before the court.
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.