Home > Insights > Blogs > In Focus

In Focus

In Focus

(By accessing, browsing or using the pages below, you agree to the Blog Conditions of Use/Disclaimer available under "Links.")

Posts

Fair use isn’t arithmetic

Mark Sableman October 25, 2018
One plus one math equation

While determining copyright fair use may seem as easy as adding up the scores of the four fair use factors, the reality is not so simple. Fair use requires complex and nuanced judgments, not simplistic arithmetic. READ MORE

In infringement, sometimes the little things don’t mean a lot

Mike Nepple May 21, 2018
hand spraypainting a wall

A fleeting glimpse of graffiti in the background of an HBO series does not constitute copyright infringement, a federal judge has ruled. READ MORE

Fair use is never simple

Mike Nepple September 26, 2017
Dr. Phil McGraw

To secure evidence for an anticipated lawsuit against TV host Dr. Phil McGraw, a producer for the show, Leah Rothman, recorded nine seconds of the show’s unaired archive footage onto her cellphone. The employee probably felt she had a strong case for making the recording. But a decision entered against her shows that fair use is never simple and straightforward, and can be argued from many different angles. READ MORE

The Grinch loses and protection of parody wins

Jim Burger September 21, 2017
Grinch

The Judge found it “virtually” impossible consumers would see the play rather than reading the original book or see the 2000 film based on the book. He found it more likely the play will increase interest in Grinch. READ MORE

Is 2 seconds of television time too much to be a fair use?

Mike Nepple August 22, 2017
48larger

In its motion to dismiss, CBS argued that the two-second on-screen display of Steven Hirsch’s photograph was a fair use, or, at most, a de minimus infringement. The district court denied the motion. READ MORE

Update: Court finds transformative nature of alleged infringing work can’t be decided by side-by-side comparison

Mike Nepple August 10, 2017
Comparison of Rastafarian images

In an update to our post on a case filed last year, a federal court in New York recently denied appropriation artist Richard’s Prince’s motion to dismiss Donald Graham’s copyright infringement lawsuit. READ MORE

Sultry Lady Liberty leads Postal Service astray

Mark Sableman July 26, 2017
LibertyStamps

Beware sultry-looking ladies. That’s one of the lessons from the recent court decision sending a copyright case against the United States Postal Service to trial, but there are more. The decision can serve as a teaching tool and warning regarding use of photos and other images. READ MORE

Fair use blocks out copyright claim over LeBron’s tattoo

Mike Nepple June 1, 2017
fair-use-ink-blog

Solid Oak sued Take-Two Interactive Software for copyright infringement last year, claiming it is a technical foul to display the copyrighted tattoo on LeBron James’s arm in Take-Two’s popular NBA 2K line of video games READ MORE

Third verse same as the first - Will Richard Prince’s transformation defense work yet again?

Mike Nepple May 8, 2017
In Focus_default blog

Richard Prince used Eric McNatt’s 2014 photograph of Alex Gordon by cropping McNatt’s photograph, surrounding it with his Instagram frame, and adding three lines of text and emojis. READ MORE