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First off today, Larry Neumeister at NBC 4 New York reports that the 2nd Circuit Court of Appeals has upheld a lower court judgment tossing a lawsuit filed against CBS and Netflix over the TV series Star Trek: Discovery.
The lawsuit was filed by Anas Abdin, who claims that discovery ripped off his in-progress video game by elements from the game to make the TV series. In particular, he focused on the use of giant tardigrades, which are normally microscopic organisms that can survive in space, as a tool for space travel.
However, the lower court tossed the case saying that Abdin had not proved substantial similarity and that the overlaps between the two were not copyrightable. The Second Circuit has upheld that decision, noting that many of the similarities are simply scientific facts, which are not copyrightable.
Next up today, Ashley Cullins at The Hollywood Reporter Esquire reports that a judge has tossed a counterclaim against the musician Lizzo over the song Truth Hurts.
The lawsuit began when the brothers Justin and Jeremiah Raisen publicly claimed to have written the song. This prompted Lizzo to strike first, seeking a declaratory judgment that they were not involved in the song nor deserved any credits on it. The Raisens filed a counterclaim suing for copyright infringement and that claim is the one that has now been tossed.
According to the judge, the duo has made multiple filings but the facts that they allege have been “irreconcilably inconsistent” and that, while they have successfully they co-wrote a preexisting song named Healthy, have not shown any ownership in Truth Hurts. The judge did grant the pair the right to amend and refile the claim though the judge expressed skepticism about the likelihood of such a complaint succeeding.
Finally today, Ciaran Kelly at the ChronicleLive reports that, after a takeover bid for the Newcastle United soccer team failed and a ruling from the World Trade Organization (WTO), the country of Saudi Arabia has announced it will be taking new steps to combat piracy in the country.
On July 30, the Saudi Public Investment Fund withdrew their offer to buy the team amidst controversy over the country’s alleged support for beoutQ, a pirate satellite and streaming service that specializes in content normally streamed by BeIN, a Qatari network. BeoutQ rose to prominence shortly after Saudi Arabia placed an embargo on Qatar, which barred any of BeIN’s channels from being broadcast in the country.
This, along with the country’s alleged defense of beoutQ, not only contributed to the negotiations to buy Newcastle United falling apart but also to a WTO ruling against the country. Now, the country’s Authority for Intellectual Property has announced a “joint-work program” with the General Commission for Audiovisual Media in hopes of increasing cooperation on fighting piracy. Whether this will have any major impact on beoutQ or other pirate networks remains to be seen.