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First off today, Eriq Gardner at The Hollywood Reporter Esquire reports that video game developer Take-Two Interactive has emerged victorious in a battle over a tattoo artist that created the works featured on several NBA players.
The lawsuit was filed by Solid Oak Sketches, which claims to own the copyright on tattoos featured on the bodies of several NBA stars. The case survived a motion to dismiss but, after discovery, the judge has opted to toss the case with a motion for summary judgment.
The judge provides multiple reasons for the judgment including that the use of the tattoos in Take-Two’s games is de minimis, meaning too small for the court to even consider. The judge also says that there was an implied license to use the tattoos in this manner and that it was almost certainly fair use. The ruling comes just one week after a similar lawsuit filed against WWE and Take-Two survived a motion to dismiss and is starting the discovery process itself.
Next up today, Kavan Flavius at The Sportster reports that World Wrestling Entertainment (WWE) has filed copyright claims against two members of their own roster as they tried to post videos of their previous matches on their YouTube account.
The issue deals with Scott Dawson and Dash Wilder, better known as the tag team The Revival. Dawson recently published footage of a match The Revival had with another tag team, The Undisputed Era, only to have WWE order the content removed from YouTube. This prompted an apology from Dawson to his fans on Twitter.
The duo is in the midst of a contract dispute with WWE. They are currently refusing to resign with the WWE and are letting their contract expire, likely with the intention of signing with rival promotion All Elite Wrestling (AEW). Though their contracts are expected to expire next month, Wilder may be held up due to time lost due to injury.
Finally today, Jason Meisner at the Chicago Tribune reports that a federal judge has issued a sharp rebuke of an art agency that filed an emergency petition over images of unicorns.
The case was filed by the Art Ask Agency, a Spanish company that specializes in drawings of unicorns and other fantasy creatures. They filed the case with a judge in Chicago demanding an immediate hearing to discuss a temporary restraining order to address alleged counterfeit products being made with their images. However, with the very real emergency of the COVID-19 pandemic bringing a halt to litigation.
As a result, the judge has pushed the hearing back to next month citing the “health and safety of our community.” This prompted the plaintiffs to file another emergency motion citing “irreparable injury”. That request came the same day the chief judge ordered all nonessential civil litigation to cease at the court. That prompted a third motion from the plaintiffs and a sharper rebuke with the judge saying, “About half of the practice of a decent lawyer is telling would-be clients that they are damned fools and should stop.”