3 Count: Off Target

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1: How a Texas Baby-Clothing Company Took Target Down (a Peg)

First off today, Emily McCullar at Texas Monthly reports that a local company, Cat & Dogma, won a copyright battle against the retail giant Target over alleged stolen designs.

The story began in 2019 when a sales representative for Cat & Dogma, complained that the company began working with Target. Cat & Dogma’s owner, Adrian Layne, realized that Target had begun selling imitations of their design, prompting the company to file a lawsuit.

The lower court dismissed the case, saying that the plaintiffs copyright the words “I Love You”. However, they appealed that decision, arguing that the similarities went beyond just the words, and the Appeals Court overturned that decision. At a trial, Cat & Dogma won a $1 million jury judgment. Though less than the $10.4 million they wanted, Layne still felt it was a significant victory.

2: Ukrainian anti-Piracy Body Continues During Wartime

Next up today, Chris Dziadul at Broadband TV News reports that the Ukrainian anti-piracy group Clean Sky is continuing to operate in the country, albeit with a somewhat expanded mission.

The group, which is made up of local media organizations, initiated some 19 new criminal proceedings last year, despite the Russian invasion of Ukraine in February 2022. Those proceedings were initiated by Clean Sky Member 1+1 Media Group and, in addition to targeting pirate outfits, it also targeted companies that granted access to banned Russian TV channels.

According to Clear Sky, they remain committed to fighting piracy but are also working “counter enemy propaganda” and “promptly respond to threats to Ukraine’s information security.” However, the organization said it is not ceasing its traditional anti-piracy efforts, saying that it is working to actively combat piracy at the same time.

3: Court Dismisses Copyright Troll’s Piracy Lawsuit Over Suspension

Finally today, Ernesto Van der Sar at Torrentfreak writes that the adult entertainment company Malibu Media has had one of its anti-piracy copyright cases dismissed after the company failed to resolve a corporate suspension issue.

For a long time, Malibu Media was one of the most active anti-piracy litigants in the U.S., with many calling the company a copyright “troll” for its practice of targeting file sharers. However, in recent years, the company’s efforts have stalled and, in 2021, the company was suspended over tax issues.

One of the company’s targets was able to use that suspension to say that Malibu cannot be a part of litigation until that is resolved. The judge agreed and gave Malibu time to rectify the situation, which did not happen. That, in turn, prompted the case to be dismissed.

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