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First off today, Eric Todisco at People reports that Jennifer Lopez has become the latest celebrity to be sued by a photographer or their agency over her use of images on Instagram and other social media.
The lawsuit was filed by the Splash News and Picture Agency, which is claiming that they are the copyright holder in a photo that Lopez shared to her Instagram story just under two years ago. They claim to have notified her of the infringement in a letter back in December 2017 and, since the photo has not been removed and no action taken, have been forced to file a lawsuit.
The agency is suing for $150,000 in damages as well as an injunction barring Lopez from publishing the photo in the future. Lopez joins a large group of celebrities in facing these kinds of lawsuits. Others that have been sued include Gigi Hadid, Ariana Grande and Khloé Kardashian.
Next up today, Reid Nakamura at The Wrap reports that a judge has tossed a lawsuit filed against the Showtime show Billions after the judge found that that there was no evidence the show copied one of its characters.
The lawsuit was filed by Wall Street performance coach Denise Shull. She alleged that the Billions character Wendy Rhoades was based on her and her 2012 book Market Mind Games. She further claimed that one of the creators of the show had requested her assistance in developing the Rhoades character.
However, the judge found that there was no evidence of infringement as, according to the dismissal, the two works do not resemble each other at all. Since the language and substance of the works were so different, the judge has dismissed the case. Showtime has said it is pleased with the ruling though there is no indication if Shull has any plans on appealing.
Finally today, Dave Stafford at The Indiana Lawyer reports that a homebuilder has emerged victorious in a case that accused them of infringing a floor plan. As part of that victory, the plaintiff in the case has been ordered to pay more than $518,000 in attorneys fees and court costs.
The lawsuit was filed by Design Basics LLC against Kerstiens Home & Designs Inc. Design Basics claimed that Kerstiens had copied or otherwise used a floor plan that they had created. However, the court ruled that copyright protection does not extend to a simple floor plan and handed the victory to Kerstiens.
Design Basics has earned a reputation as a copyright “troll”, having filed many similar lawsuits in other courts. However, they have not had much luck as they have also been hit with similar judgments of over $310,000 and $240,000 respectively. However, this case represents the largest of such award against the company to date.