Mockumentaries, Downloads, Licenses, and First Sales


In this Episode:

  • follow ups
  • Letterman v. Phoenix?
  • Naked Cowpersons
  • Eminem wins on downloads
  • ASCAP Loses on downloads
  • MADONNA not the only material girl
  • Ivi, Inc. says it doesn’t need a license for tv rebroadcasts
  • Righthaven: Troll or Defender?
  • Vernor v. Autodesk – is the first sale doctrine dead?

GET CLE CREDIT for this episode.


Follow ups

greeting card featured a scene with a  caption that read “Paris’s First Day as a Waitress” and made a pun on her trademarked catch phrase, “That’s Hot.” In 2007, Hilton sued, claiming her publicity rights had been violated.

  • Celador wins interest award of $50 Million in “Millionaire” case  (on a $270 Million damages award)


Letterman threatens suit against Joaquin Phoenix over use of late show footage in film

Would David Letterman sue Joaquin Phoenix? (video)

YouTube – Joaquin Phoenix Bizarre Interview on Letterman: The New Andy Kaufman? –

SpringBoardMedia: Fair Use, Mockumentary and Letterman

Naked Cowboy vs Naked Cowgirl

Naked Cowgirl trying to invalidate Naked Cowboy trademark

Burck’s Trademark registration number 3792432

Trademark Trials and Appeals Blog

Eminem Wins lawsuit  against label over characterization of downloads

Issue was whether Aftermath’s provision of Eminem’s songs to iTunes was a “sale” or “license” for purposes of a contract drafted in the pre-digital age.

Media Law Prof Blog: Ninth Circuit: Downloads “Licensed” Under Eminem’s Contract; Entitled To Fifty Percent Royalties

Lexology – The Ninth Circuit’s Eminem license vs sale decision

F.B.T. Productions vs. Aftermath Records US 9th Circuit Opinion

2nd Circuit ruled (just yesterday (9/28)) against ASCAP (ASCAP v. YAHOO,

upholding a lower court ruling  that DOWNLOADS are NOT public Performances

Supreme Court to review file-sharing case

Harper v. Maverick Recording Co.

Supreme Court could take its first RIAA file-sharing case

Supreme Court requests response on ‘innocent infringer’ cert. petition

Madonna sued

LA Triumph, a clothing manufacturer based in — where else? — Los Angeles, says Madonna’s Material Girl line of clothing for Macy’s breaches its trademark for the name. The company claims it’s owned a brand of clothing called Material Girl since 1997.

Madonna Lawsuit – Material Girl Sued | Styleite

New Live TV Streaming startup Ivi, Inc. relying on interesting copyright provisions to avoid liability

ivi, Inc., has raised $1 million in venture funding with a self-proclaimed “legal strategy” to rebroadcast television online without the permission of broadcasters or content-owners.

The company claims it doesn’t need to actually have permission from broadcasters or content owners. Instead, according to an interviewgiven by ivi founder and CEO Todd Weaver to TechFlash, the company “pays the Copyright Office which in turn pays the stations an undisclosed amount to pick up the signal, which it does by either placing a physical encoder device at the station or capturing it from satellite or antennae.”

Complaint for Declaratory Judgment

Start-Up Rides Copyright Gray Area to Offer Live TV Online |

Watch out, Hulu. Meet the new Napster of television

Title 17, United States Code, Section 111 (deals with liability of cable television systems and exemptions for hotels, homes, and educators)


Righthaven’s Brand of Copyright Trolling | Electronic Frontier Foundation

Las Vegas startup sues websites: copyright trolls and the rise of the internet police

Barratry and Champerty discussed as defenses in Righthaven case

Vernor v. Autodesk

First sale doctrine doesn’t apply where software sold as a license containing restrictions on use and resale.

Vernor v. AUTODESK, INC., 2010

Technology & Marketing Law Blog: Vernor v. Autodesk-…

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