Useful Article: How to Register for DMCA Safe Harbor Protection

Heads up!

If you own a website that includes user-generated content such as discussion boards, you could be vulnerable to a lawsuit if anything they post infringes a copyright.

The “Safe Harbor” provisions of the Digital Millennium Copyright Act (DMCA) protect websites like this from liability for user content — but they have to register for that status and follow the relevant guidelines first.

This article explains how DMCA Safe Harbor registration works, why it’s important, and how to make sure you’re covered.

Read it here!

IP News: Supreme Court Strikes Down Ban On Registration of Trademarks Containing “Immoral” or “Scandalous” Matter

Recently in IP Law News: A Supreme Court verdict in the case of Iancu v. Brunetti struck down as unconstitutional the Lanham Act’s longstanding ban on trademark registration of “immoral” or “scandalous” matter.

Justice Elena Kagan indicated in her written opinion on behalf of the court that the statute in question is unconstitutional because it gives preference to one set of ideas over another, favoring “conventional moral standards” against departure from same, in a way that results in  viewpoint-biased and discriminatory trademark examination; a trademark’s allowability for registration shouldn’t be contingent on what scandalizes the Examiner.

This was an expected development following the precedent set by a similar case two years ago, Matal v. Tam, that overturned the Lanham Act’s related prohibition of trademarks that include “disparaging” matter as unconstitutional on First Amendment grounds.

Read the full article here!

Interesting Article on IP Law in Gaming

Check out another cool IP Law News read, the first of a trilogy of articles from the blog of an IP attorney who also loves to play Dungeons and Dragons.

This writer posted gaming resources online for other DnD players then received an email from game publisher Wizards of the Coast demanding he remove them  — and, being more savvy about copyright law than most gamers they’ve tried this on in the past, he’s decided to call their bluff.

In service of the gaming community and industry, which he feels are harmed by the extent to which such tactics usually work, the writer explains several points of copyright law accessibly and engagingly as they apply to game content, including what is and isn’t copyrightable and why it works that way, and why he contends that WotC’s actions constitute copyright misuse.

Read the full article here!

IP News: University of California sues big retailers over LED bulbs

More interesting IP news to share! The University of California is suing several large retailers including Target, Amazon, Wal-Mart, Bed Bath & Beyond, and Ikea, (as a representative subset) regarding a design for a vintage-looking LED lightbulb design that includes a clear bulb with a glowing LED ‘filament’.

UC Santa Barbara contends that researchers in its Solid State Lighting and Energy Electronics Center, including Nobel laureate Professor Shuji Nakamura, originated the design by overcoming the uni-directionality of a typical LED.

The suit was just filed with the Los Angeles federal court, along with a complaint to the U.S. International Trade Commission.

Follow this link for one article on this story.

And this link for another.

Interesting Article: Gigi Hadid, Heroine of the Copyright Revolution?

Check out this article about a case of copyright litigation, which could hold interesting implications for the future of copyright law among the stars!

Recently, model Gigi Hadid posed for some paparazzi, and then posted one of the photos they took on her social media. The paparazzi sued Hadid for using their photos, even though the photos were of her and she had stopped and posed for them.

The author of this article writes that the arguments made in this case are likely to be repeated in similar future cases (which are getting more and more common), and hopes that they may even lead to establishing a more equitable precedent for all such cases, as an important step on the road to updating copyright law for the Internet era.

Read the full article here.