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Intellectual Property Law

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Full-Text Articles in Entertainment, Arts, and Sports Law

What Notice Did, Jessica Litman May 2016

What Notice Did, Jessica Litman

Jessica Litman

In this article, I explore the effect of the copyright notice prerequisite on the law's treatment of copyright ownership. The notice prerequisite, as construed by the courts, encouraged the development of legal doctrines that herded the ownership of copyrights into the hands of publishers and other intermediaries, notwithstanding statutory provisions that seem to have been designed at least in part to enable authors to keep their copyrights. Because copyright law required notice, other doctrinal developments were shaped by and distorted by that requirement. The promiscuous alienability of U.S. copyrights may itself have been an accidental development deriving from ...


From Bards To Search Engines: Finding What Readers Want From Ancient Times To The World Wide Web, Stephen Maurer Dec 2015

From Bards To Search Engines: Finding What Readers Want From Ancient Times To The World Wide Web, Stephen Maurer

Stephen M. Maurer

Copyright theorists often ask how incentives can be designed to create better books, movies, and art. But this is not the whole story. As the Roman satirist Martial pointed out two thousand years ago, markets routinely ignore good and even excellent works. The insight reminds us that incentives to find content are just as necessary as incentives to make it. Recent social science research explains why markets fail and how timely interventions can save deserving titles from oblivion. This article reviews society’s long struggle to fix the vagaries of search since the invention of literature. We build on this ...


Adopting Subsequent Remuneration Right In Chinese Copyright Law, Xi Chen Aug 2015

Adopting Subsequent Remuneration Right In Chinese Copyright Law, Xi Chen

Xi Chen

One heavily and contentiously argued clause in Chinese Copyright Law amendments drafts focuses on the practicality of granting authors of audiovisual works the legal right to collect subsequent remunerations (SRR), when their works are reused in subsequent exploitations.

With the rapid increase of media channels for the Chinese movie industry, and other entertainment industries relying on a heavy usage of audiovisual work, authors demand that they should be entitled to the profit earned from derivative markets and other media channel beyond the first intended market. In order to balance the conflicting interest between the author and the producer, and to ...


The Evolution Of Internet Service Providers From Partners To Adversaries: Tracking Shifts In Interconnection Goals And Strategies In The Internet’S Fifth Generation, Rob Frieden Jul 2015

The Evolution Of Internet Service Providers From Partners To Adversaries: Tracking Shifts In Interconnection Goals And Strategies In The Internet’S Fifth Generation, Rob Frieden

Rob Frieden

At the Internet’s inception, carriers providing the bit switching and transmission function largely embraced expanding connections and users as a primary service goal. These ventures refrained from metering traffic and charging for carriage based on the assumption that traffic volumes roughly matched, or that traffic measurement was not worth the bother in light of external funding from government grants. Most Internet Service Providers (“ISPs”) bartered network access through a process known as peering in lieu of metering traffic and billing for network use. As governments removed subsidies and commercial carriers invested substantial funds to build larger and faster networks ...


Déjà Vu All Over Again: Questions And A Few Suggestions On How The Fcc Can Lawfully Regulate Internet Access, Rob Frieden Jul 2015

Déjà Vu All Over Again: Questions And A Few Suggestions On How The Fcc Can Lawfully Regulate Internet Access, Rob Frieden

Rob Frieden

This paper will examine the FCC’s March, 2015 Open Internet Order with an eye to assessing whether and how the Commission can successfully defend its decision in an appellate court. On two prior occasions, the FCC failed to convince a reviewing court that proposed regulatory safeguards do not unlawfully impose common carrier duties on private carriers. The Commission now has opted to reclassify broadband Internet access as common carriage, a decision sure to trigger a third court appeal. The FCC Open Internet Order offers several, possibly contradictory, justifications for its decision to apply Title II of the Communications Act ...


Network Neutrality And Consumer Demand For “Better Than Best Efforts” Traffic Management, Rob Frieden May 2015

Network Neutrality And Consumer Demand For “Better Than Best Efforts” Traffic Management, Rob Frieden

Rob Frieden

This paper assesses whether and how ISPs can offer quality of service enhancements, at premium prices for full motion video, while still complying with the new rules and regulations established by the Federal Communications Commission (“FCC”) in March, 2015. The paper explains that having made the controversial decision to reclassify all forms of Internet access as a telecommunications service, the FCC increases regulatory uncertainty. In particular, the FCC has failed to identify instances where “retail ISPs,” serving residential broadband subscribers, can offer quality of service enhancements that serve real consumer wants without harming competition and the ability of most content ...


Invisible Labor, Invisible Play: Online Gold Farming And The Boundary Between Jobs And Games, Julian Dibbell Apr 2015

Invisible Labor, Invisible Play: Online Gold Farming And The Boundary Between Jobs And Games, Julian Dibbell

Julian Dibbell

When does work become play, and play work? Courts have considered the question in a variety of economic contexts, from student athletes seeking recognition as employees to professional blackjack players seeking to be treated by casinos just like casual players. Here I apply the question to a relatively novel context: that of online gold farming, a gray-market industry in which wage-earning workers, largely based in China, are paid to play online fantasy games (MMOs) that reward them with virtual items their employers sell for profit to the same games’ casual players. Gold farming is clearly a job (and under the ...


Nsfw: An Empirical Study Of Scandalous Trademarks, Megan M. Carpenter Mar 2015

Nsfw: An Empirical Study Of Scandalous Trademarks, Megan M. Carpenter

Megan M Carpenter

This project is an empirical analysis of trademarks that have received rejections based on the judgment that they are “scandalous." It is the first of its kind. The Lanham Act bars registration for trademarks that are “scandalous” and “immoral.” While much has been written on the morality provisions in the Lanham Act generally, this piece is the first scholarly project that engages an empirical analysis of 2(a) rejections based on scandalousness; it contains a look behind the scenes at how the morality provisions are applied throughout the trademark registration process. We study which marks are being rejected, what evidence ...


The Right To Read, Lea Shaver Feb 2015

The Right To Read, Lea Shaver

Lea Shaver

Reading – for education and for pleasure – may be framed as a personal indulgence, a moral virtue, or even a civic duty. What are the implications of framing reading as a human right?

Although novel, the rights-based frame finds strong support in international human rights law. The right to read need not be defended as a “new” human right. Rather, it can be located at the intersection of more familiar guarantees. Well-established rights to education, science, culture, and freedom of expression, among others, provide the necessary normative support for recognizing a universal right to read as already implicit in international law ...


Making A Mark: Taking A Glance At Trademarks And Graphic Infringement, Heather S. Ray Jan 2015

Making A Mark: Taking A Glance At Trademarks And Graphic Infringement, Heather S. Ray

Heather S Ray

No abstract provided.


Work Made For Hire – Analyzing The Multifactor Balancing Test, Ryan G. Vacca Jan 2015

Work Made For Hire – Analyzing The Multifactor Balancing Test, Ryan G. Vacca

Akron Law Publications

Authorship, and hence, initial ownership of copyrighted works is oftentimes controlled by the 1976 Copyright Act’s work made for hire doctrine. This doctrine states that works created by employees within the scope of their employment result in the employer owning the copyright. One key determination in this analysis is whether the hired party is an employee or independent contractor. In 1989, the U.S. Supreme Court, in CCNV v. Reid, answered the question of how employees are distinguished from independent contractors by setting forth a list of factors courts should consider. Unfortunately, the Supreme Court did not give further ...


Work Made For Hire – Analyzing The Multifactor Balancing Test, Ryan G. Vacca Dec 2014

Work Made For Hire – Analyzing The Multifactor Balancing Test, Ryan G. Vacca

Ryan G. Vacca

Authorship, and hence, initial ownership of copyrighted works is oftentimes controlled by the 1976 Copyright Act’s work made for hire doctrine. This doctrine states that works created by employees within the scope of their employment result in the employer owning the copyright. One key determination in this analysis is whether the hired party is an employee or independent contractor. In 1989, the U.S. Supreme Court, in CCNV v. Reid, answered the question of how employees are distinguished from independent contractors by setting forth a list of factors courts should consider. Unfortunately, the Supreme Court did not give further ...


The Google Art Project: An Analysis From A Legal And Social Perspective On Copyright Implications, Katrina Wu Dec 2014

The Google Art Project: An Analysis From A Legal And Social Perspective On Copyright Implications, Katrina Wu

Katrina Wu

The Google Art Project is an ambitious attempt by Google to curate worldwide artwork online in the highest resolution possible. Google accomplishes this by partnering with museums where museums provide access to art collections and Google provides the technology to capture high quality images. Under this existing model, Google places the burden of copyright clearances on museums and removes images from online if requested by copyright owners. An endeavor like the Google Art Project is not unprecedented however, when Google attempted to put the world’s books online under the Google Books Project, scanning millions of titles and offering snippets ...


Intellectual Property, Marathons, And Other Running Events, John C. Zwisler Sep 2014

Intellectual Property, Marathons, And Other Running Events, John C. Zwisler

John C Zwisler

No abstract provided.


The Costs And Benefits Of Regulatory Intervention In Internet Service Provider Interconnection Disputes: Lessons From Broadcaster-Cable Retransmission Consent Negotiations, Rob Frieden Aug 2014

The Costs And Benefits Of Regulatory Intervention In Internet Service Provider Interconnection Disputes: Lessons From Broadcaster-Cable Retransmission Consent Negotiations, Rob Frieden

Rob Frieden

This paper considers what limited roles the FCC may lawfully assume to ensure timely and fair interconnection and compensation agreements in the Internet ecosystem. The paper examines the FCC’s limited role in broadcaster-cable television retransmission consent negotiations with an eye toward assessing the applicability of this model. The FCC explicitly states that it lacks jurisdiction to prescribe terms, or to mandate binding arbitration. However, it recently interpreted its statutory authority to ensure “good faith” negotiations as allowing it to constrain broadcaster negotiating leverage by prohibiting multiple operators, having the largest market share, from joining in collective negotiations with cable ...


Internet Protocol Television And The Challenge Of “Mission Critical” Bits., Rob Frieden Aug 2014

Internet Protocol Television And The Challenge Of “Mission Critical” Bits., Rob Frieden

Rob Frieden

The Internet increasingly provides an alternative distribution medium for video and other types of high value, bandwidth intensive content. Many consumers have become “technology agnostic” about what kind of wireline or wireless medium provides service. However, they expect carriers to offer access anytime, anywhere, via any device and in any format. These early adopters of new technologies and alternatives to “legacy” media have no patience with the concept of “appointment television” that limits access to a specific time, on a single channel and in only one presentation format. This paper assesses whether and how Internet Service Providers (“ISPs”) can offer ...


Reforming Copyright Interpretation, Zahr K. Said Aug 2014

Reforming Copyright Interpretation, Zahr K. Said

Zahr K Said

This Article argues that copyright law needs to acknowledge and reform its interpretive choice regime. Even though judges face potentially outcome-determinative choices among competing sources of interpretive authority when they adjudicate copyrightable works, their selection of interpretive methods has been almost entirely overlooked by scholars and judges alike. This selection among competing interpretive methods demands that judges choose where to locate their own authority: in the work itself; in the context around the work, including its reception, or in the author’s intentions; in expert opinions; or in judicial intuition. Copyright’s interpretive choice regime controls questions of major importance ...


“Can I Profit From My Own Name And Likeness As A College Athlete?” The Predictive Legal Analytics Of A College Player’S Publicity Rights Vs. First Amendment Rights Of Others, Roger M. Groves Jul 2014

“Can I Profit From My Own Name And Likeness As A College Athlete?” The Predictive Legal Analytics Of A College Player’S Publicity Rights Vs. First Amendment Rights Of Others, Roger M. Groves

Roger M. Groves

Two federal court decisions during 2013 have changed the game for college students versus the schools, the NCAA and video game makers. This article explores whether for the first time in history these athletes can profit from their own name and likeness and prevent others from doing so. But those cases still leave many untested applications to new facts – facts that the courts have not faced. Particularly intriguing is how 21st Century technology will apply to this area in future litigation. No publicity rights case or article to date has explored the application of predictive analytics, computer programs, algorithms, and ...


Copyright Without Creators, Jonathan M. Barnett May 2014

Copyright Without Creators, Jonathan M. Barnett

Jonathan M Barnett

Copyright is typically justified by the rationale that profits induce authors and other artists to invest resources in cultural production. This rationale is vulnerable to the objection that some artists have intrinsic incentives to invest in cultural production and do not require significant capital to do so. Even accepting this objection, copyright is justified by an alternative rationale: it supports the profit-motivated intermediaries that bear the high costs and risks involved in evaluating, distributing and marketing content in mass-cultural markets. This “authorless” rationale is consistent with the intermediated structure of mature mass-cultural markets and accounts for long-standing features of copyright ...


Invalid Pre-Termination Grants And The Challenge To Obtain A Remedy, Samuel H. Jones May 2014

Invalid Pre-Termination Grants And The Challenge To Obtain A Remedy, Samuel H. Jones

Samuel H Jones

The 1976 Copyright Act created what is now commonly known as the termination right, which allows authors to unilaterally terminate prior grants of their copyrights and reclaim ownership. This right was created, in large part, to liberate authors from unremunerative agreements previously entered into when the value of their copyrighted works had not yet been realized. It can be a powerful tool for authors to leverage more favorable agreements than they were previously able, particularly when those copyrights are highly valued. To ensure authors’ ability to exercise this right, Congress enacted provisions in the 1976 Copyright Act that prohibit authors ...


Cracking The Cable Conundrum: Government Regulation Of A La Carte Models In The Cable Industry, Jade Brewster Apr 2014

Cracking The Cable Conundrum: Government Regulation Of A La Carte Models In The Cable Industry, Jade Brewster

Jade Brewster

This Article examines the practice of cable bundling, a term describing how cable providers offer channels in “packages” of channels rather than allowing consumers to buy channels individually. These cable bundles have been criticized by politicians, academics, and the public alike, many of whom believe cable bundling simultaneously increases the price of cable and forces consumers to pay for programming they neither want nor use. Politicians have responded to these criticisms by advocating for legislation requiring cable companies to offer a la carte pricing options, in which customers can pick and choose individual channels. But evidence that an a la ...


Friend Or Faux: The Trademark Counterfeiting Act's Inability To Stop The Sale Of Counterfeit Sporting Goods, Jennifer Riso Apr 2014

Friend Or Faux: The Trademark Counterfeiting Act's Inability To Stop The Sale Of Counterfeit Sporting Goods, Jennifer Riso

Jennifer Riso

The demand for counterfeit sporting goods, such as jerseys and other apparel, is on the rise as the prices of authentic goods continue to increase. The Trademark Counterfeiting Act of 1984 criminalizes the import and sale of counterfeit goods, but is ineffective at addressing the demand side of counterfeit goods. This paper analyzes the history behind the Act and recommends ways to ensure that the act will stay relevant as technology makes it easier to purchase counterfeit goods.


The Transmit Clause Test: A Pragmatic Approach To A Contemporary Understanding Of The Ambiguity In The Copyright Act’S Transmit Clause, Samantha Tilipman Apr 2014

The Transmit Clause Test: A Pragmatic Approach To A Contemporary Understanding Of The Ambiguity In The Copyright Act’S Transmit Clause, Samantha Tilipman

Samantha Tilipman

The 1976 Copyright Act was a response to development of new technology and an attempt to clarify copyright law to promote further investment in the burgeoning sphere of cable systems.[1] In drafting the provisions of the new Act, Congress created the “Transmit Clause,” a key passage nestled into the definition of “to perform or display a work ‘publicly.’”[2]The ambiguity of the Transmit Clause has led the circuits to interpret it differently leading to conflicting caselaw on opposite ends of the nation. The purpose of this note is to provide the Supreme Court of the United States and ...


Decoding Bollywood’S Royalty-Sharing Conundrum, Pralika Jain Apr 2014

Decoding Bollywood’S Royalty-Sharing Conundrum, Pralika Jain

Pralika Jain

India’s film making community and business got „industry‟ status only in 2011. However, unlike major industries such as telecom and pharmaceutical, the film industry (popularly known as “Bollywood”) is characterised by a major lack of legal rules and institutions to administer them, the problem being most acute in respect of artists. Consequently, the industry is governed completely by market forces whose successful players wield nearly all the bargaining power. It’s almost baffling that a film industry which is currently worlds second in terms of revenue is so thinly regulated.


N.I.G.G.A., Slumdog, Dyke, Jap, And Heeb: Reconsidering Disparaging Trademarks In A Post-Racial Era, Amanda E. Compton Mar 2014

N.I.G.G.A., Slumdog, Dyke, Jap, And Heeb: Reconsidering Disparaging Trademarks In A Post-Racial Era, Amanda E. Compton

Amanda E. Compton

Currently registration of disparaging trademarks is prohibited under Section 2(a) of the Lanham Act. Recent events, however, should reinvigorate the debate about the protection and registration of disparaging marks: (1) recent decisions published by the Trademark Trial and Appeal Board (TTAB) that continue to address and highlight the issues surrounding the registration of disparaging marks; (2) a proposed federal act that would not only specifically bar the registration of any trademark that includes the word “redskins,” but would also retroactively cancel any existing registration that consist of or includes that term; and (3) an amendment to a state act ...


Reconciling Original With Secondary Creation: The Subtle Incentive Theory Of Copyright Licensing, Yafit Lev-Aretz Feb 2014

Reconciling Original With Secondary Creation: The Subtle Incentive Theory Of Copyright Licensing, Yafit Lev-Aretz

Yafit Lev-Aretz

Copyright literature has been long familiar with the lack of licensing choices in various creative markets. In the absence of a lawful licensing alternatives, consumers of works as well as secondary creators wishing to use protected elements of preexisting works are often left with no choice but to either infringe on the copyright of the rightholder or refrain from the use. As further creation is regularly impeded, the dearth of licensing greatly conflicts with the utilitarian foundation of copyright and its constitutional goal to promote creative progress. Legal scholarship has submitted various recommendations in response to the licensing failure, homing ...


A New First Amendment Goal Line Defense – Stopping The Right Of Publicity Offense, Mark Conrad Feb 2014

A New First Amendment Goal Line Defense – Stopping The Right Of Publicity Offense, Mark Conrad

Mark A. Conrad

The use of images with the recognizable features of former NCAA student-athletes by a digital video firm has resulted in two highly publicized lawsuits by former college players claiming violations of their right of publicity. Thus far, two federal appeals courts – the Third Circuit in Hart v. Electronic Arts and the Ninth Circuit in Keller v. Electronic Arts -- have refused to dismiss their claims, concluding that the use of the player images constitute a valid cause of action. While their actions have garnered sympathy among the public and many scholars, it is the author’s contention that both lawsuits – along ...


The Evolution Of The Digital Millennium Copyright Act; Changing Interpretations Of The Dmca And Future Implications For Copyright Holders, Hillary A. Henderson Jan 2014

The Evolution Of The Digital Millennium Copyright Act; Changing Interpretations Of The Dmca And Future Implications For Copyright Holders, Hillary A. Henderson

Hillary A Henderson

Copyright law rewards an artificial monopoly to individual authors for their creations. This reward is based on the belief that, by granting authors the exclusive right to reproduce their works, they receive an incentive and means to create, which in turn advances the welfare of the general public by “promoting the progress of science and useful arts.” Copyright protection subsists . . . in original works of authorship fixed in any tangible medium of expression, now known or later developed, from which they can be perceived, reproduced, or otherwise communicated, either directly or with the aid of a machine or device . . . . In no ...


Picture [Im]Perfect: Photoshop Redefining Beauty In Cosmetic Advertisements, Giving False Advertising A Run For The Money, Ashley R. Brown Jan 2014

Picture [Im]Perfect: Photoshop Redefining Beauty In Cosmetic Advertisements, Giving False Advertising A Run For The Money, Ashley R. Brown

Ashley R Brown

This paper discusses the use of Photoshop in the United States and when overly retouched ads cross the threshold into False Advertising. I consider opinions from the NAD and whether or not a "Photoshop Law" would ever be feasible in the United States.


Net Bias And The Treatment Of “Mission-Critical” Bits, Rob Frieden Jan 2014

Net Bias And The Treatment Of “Mission-Critical” Bits, Rob Frieden

Rob Frieden

The Internet increasingly provides an alternative distribution medium for video and other types of high value, bandwidth intensive content. Many consumers have become “technology agnostic” about what kind of wireline or wireless medium provides service. However, they expect carriers to offer access anytime, anywhere, via any device and in any distribution format. These early adopters of new technologies and alternatives to “legacy” media have no patience with the concept of “appointment television” that limits access to a specific time, on a particular channel and in a single presentation format. This paper assesses whether and how Internet Service Providers (“ISPs”) can ...