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First off today, Andrew Albanese at Publishers’ Weekly reports that U.S. Senator Thom Tillis (R-NC), a member of the Senate Judiciary Committee, wrote a letter to the Internet Archive implying that the National Emergency Library was “unilaterally” creating an “emergency copyright act”.
Earlier in the month, the Internet Archive made millions of its in-copyright books available for online viewing regardless of how regularly they were checked out or how many copies they had legitimate access to. This caused a furvor as authors and publishers alike accused the Internet Archive of engaging in piracy by sharing the books so broadly without permission.
However, in their response to the letter, the Internet Archive said that there was no need to create such an emergency copyright act as, they believe, copyright law supports their actions. In particular, they claim that fair use allows libraries to “adjust to changing circumstances.”
Next up today, Kristi DeRubertis at The Kingdom Insider reports that Disney has emerged victorious in a lawsuit against the online retailer DisGear over allegations the latter was selling clothing and other merchandise featuring Disney trademarks and copyrights.
DisGear, also known as Mouseprint Media, formed in 2014 and made a business selling merchandise that was similar to Disney’s brand and characters. This prompted Disney to file a lawsuit against the company last year and they quickly received a temporary injunction.
Now that injunction is permanent and it orders DisGear to shut down its business, relinquish all merchandise and to never open back up or sell anything with Disney imagery again. There is no mention of a cash settlement or other kind of monetary judgment.
Finally today, The Fashion Law reports that a New York court has dismissed a lawsuit by photographer Stephanie Sinclair against the website Mashable over Mashable’s embedding of her photograph onto their website.
The lawsuit was filed in January 2018 and accused Mashable of infringing Sinclair’s copyright by embedding one of her images without permission. This came after Mashable attempted to license the image from Sinclair but was denied.
However, the image was posted to Instagram by Sinclair and was embedded from her Instagram account. As such, the judge ruled that the Instagram terms of service made Mashable’s embedding perfectly legal and, as a result, the court dismissed the case. Other cases have found that embedding images can be a copyright infringement, but only if the original upload was, itself, an infringement. Since this upload was authorized, the court dismissed the case.