TRIAL CALL

James D. Crosby, Attorney at Law. Complex and General Business Litigation and Trial Representation. San Diego, California. O: (619) 450-4149 C: (858) 705-0083 Email: crosby@crosbyattorney.com

Copyright Defense Win Reversed – Proving Authorization to Copy is Defendant’s Burden

James D. Crosby, Attorney at Law - Complex and General Business Litigation and Trial Representation - San Diego, California

This is a Trial Call guest post – an interesting piece on evidentiary burdens in copyright litigation from my partner, Doug Lytle. Doug discusses a recent Seventh Circuit copyright infringement case about making and distributing copies of a painting. The piece and the opinion identify some important pitfalls for copyright litigators, and offers some preventative guidance for those who make copies of or distribute the creative works of others. Thanks, Doug! Jim

Takes On Law

In a recent copyright infringement case about making and distributing copies of a painting, the Seventh Circuit Court of Appeals in  Ali v. Final Call, Inc. (7th Cir., Aug. 10, 2016, No. 15-2963) held that the district court misstated the elements of a prima facie copyright infringement claim and erroneously shifted to plaintiff the burden of proving that copies made and distributed by the defendant were unauthorized.  The opinion identifies some important pitfalls for copyright litigators, and offers some preventative guidance for those who make copies of or distribute the creative works of others.  [See THE TAKE-AWAYS below.]

Here are the basic facts:

Plaintiff Ali is an artist.  In 1983, Ali painted a portrait of Minister Louis Farrakhan (“Minister Farrakhan painting”), for which Farrakhan paid Ali $5,000.  Ali registered his copyright in the painting in 1997.  Defendant The Final Call (a newspaper for the Nation of Islam) sells various posters and prints.  The Final…

View original post 1,797 more words

%d bloggers like this: