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1: Marvin Gaye Family Seeks ‘Blurred Lines’ Appeal, Warns of “Devastating Consequences” of Key Ruling
First off today, Eriq Gardner at The Hollywood Reporter Esquire reports that, with less than a month before the scheduled trial, the Marvin Gaye estate is asking the judge to grant them an opportunity to appeal on a key decision, one that they say could have “devastating consequences” on copyright protection for classic songs.
After the estate for Marvin Gaye made allegations that Robin Thicke and Parrell Williams’ hit Blurred Lines was an infringement of Gaye’s Got to Give it Up, Thicke and Williams proactively sued. However, since the sound recording was never registered with the U.S. Copyright Office (this is because pre-1972 sound recordings are not covered under federal protection) the judge found the family only had standing to sue over the composition. The judge initially prohibited the recording of Got To Give it Up from being heard at trial but reversed that decision.
Now the Gaye estate is asking for a continuance on the planned February trial so they can file for an interlocutory appeal. According to the estate, the 1909 copyright act, which the work is covered under, as long as the work is properly registered, the registration covers all versions of the composition, including the recording. They go on to say that failing to recognize this puts other pre-1972 sound recordings at risk of reuse including works by Elvis Presley and The Beatles.
Next up today, Judy Cantor-Navas at Billboard reports that Cristian Mauricio Escuti and German Schulz, two South Florida songwriters, have filed a lawsuit against Enrique Inglesias and others over the hit song Bailando.
According to the duo, they wrote the song Quiero Bailar Contigo in 2009 but failed to register it until 2014. According to them, Bailando is very similar but so far no side-by-side comparison has been done.
According to the plaintiffs, they submitted their song to Sony/ATV in 2012 but heard nothing back. In the meantime, Bailando has gone on to spend 39 straight weeks atop the Hot Latin songs chart, setting a new record.
Finally today, Russell Brandom at The Verge reports that software maker Adobe has filed a lawsuit against the clothing chain Forever 21 saying that the company pirated some 63 different instances of Adobe software including Photoshop, Adobe and Illustrator.
Adobe is joined in the lawsuit by two other software creators, Autodesk and Corel who are claiming the chain also pirated copies of their applications, which include AutoCad, WinZip and PaintShopPro.
The lawsuit adds that Forever 21 continued its infringing activities after they were approached by Adobe and asked to stop. Adobe recently moved to subscription model for its software, which while popular with some users, left many long-time customers unhappy.
That’s it for the three count today. We will be back tomorrow with three more copyright links. If you have a link that you want to suggest a link for the column or have any proposals to make it better. Feel free to leave a comment or send me an email. I hope to hear from you.