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First off today, Eriq Gardner at The Hollywood Reporter Esquire reports that Sony Pictures has been hit with a lawsuit by Possibility Pictures, the producers of To Write Love on Her Arms, over Sony’s alleged failure to prevent piracy of the picture in question.
In 2014 Sony Pictures was the victim of a cyber attack that, in addition to leaking employee information, also saw four unreleased films leaked. Among those films was To Write Love on Her Arms. The film was downloaded some 20,000 times in the immediate aftermath of the hack.
According to Possibility Pictures, Sony, in its contract, had an obligation to use all available to prevent piracy but failed to do so. Possibility is seeking is payment from Sony for what they would have earned with full exploitation of the film. Sony previously settled with former employees over leaked data for between $5.5 to $8 million.
Next up today, Chris Morran at The Consumerist reports that the Second Circuit Court of Appeals has ruled that both Sony and rapper Ghostface Killah will have to face a lawsuit filed by Jack Urbont, the composer of the theme song for Iron Man from the 1966 Marvel Cartoon The Marvel Super Heroes.
According to Urbont, he was paid $3,000 for a collation of themes, including the Iron Man theme, but that he never signed any agreement waiving his rights to the work. Marvel, however, disputed his ownership of the songs citing several agreements signed since but Urbont said that none had actually transferred copyright in the work.
Urbont sued Sony and Ghostface Killah alleging copyright infringement by Ghostface Killah on his Supreme Clientele album where he sampled the theme in two tracks. However, Sony successfully argued that Urbont didn’t own the composition in question and that Marvel was the true owner. On appeal, Urbont successfully argued that there was enough question over the ownership of the composition that the matter should go back to the lower court for a full trial.
Finally today, Chris Cooke at Complete Music Update reports that accused KickassTorrents operator Artem Vaulin has hired Ira Rothken, the attorney who also represents Kim Dotcom in the Megaupload case.
Vaulin, a Ukranian, was arrested in Poland on suspicion of operating Kickasstorrents, one of the largest piracy-related sites on the Internet. He is currently facing extradition to the United States, which wants him to stand trial for criminal copyright infringement among other suspected crimes.
His situation is similar, in many ways, to Kim Dotcom. Dotcom was arrested in January 2012 at his home in New Zealand over his role in operating Megaupload. Megaupload, at the time, was one of the largest file sharing websites in the world and Dotcom was accused of money laundering and criminal copyright infringement. However, Dotcom has not yet been extradited to the United States following multiple delays in receiving an extradition hearing, which only happened recently and is on appeal after finding in favor of the U.S. government.
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.