In this episode of The Briefing by the IP Law BlogScott Hervey and Josh Escovedo discuss the 8th Circuit’s opinion on copyright protection for architectural plans that could uphend “standard marketing practices” in Real Estate. Continue Reading Supreme Court Petitioned to Overturn 8th Circuit’s Holding on Architectural Plans that Upends “Standard Marketing Practices” in Real Estate Industry

The Supreme Court granted a petition for writ of certiorari filed by the Andy Warhol Foundation for the Visual Arts that arises from a copyright infringement action filed by photographer Lynn Goldsmith, who took the photos of Prince that were subsequently the subject of Warhol’s allegedly infringing works. In short, Warhol painted multiple works of art utilizing Goldsmith’s photographs as source material. Warhol and now his foundation believed that the work was transformative in nature and therefore not infringing. Goldsmith disagreed and filed suit in federal court. Continue Reading The Supreme Court Grants Certiorari in Copyright Infringement Action Involving Warhol, Prince, and Goldsmith

In this episode of The Briefing by the IP Law BlogScott Hervey and Josh Escovedo discuss a trademark dispute between a restaurant and a craft cookie maker, over the use of similar marks for cookies. Continue Reading Cookie Co’s Motion to Dismiss Trademark Lawsuit by Restaurant Crumbles

In California, an idea theft claim is based in large part on the California Supreme Court case of Desny v. Wilder. In Desny, the plaintiff Victor Desny wrote a script depicting the real-life story of Floyd Collins, a boy who made headlines after he was trapped in a cave eighty feet underground. In an effort to market his script, Desny called Billy Wilder, a writer, producer and director at Paramount Pictures. Desny could not get through to Wilder and subsequently stripped his script to the bare facts so that Wilder’s secretary could copy it in short-hand over the phone.  After reading his synopsis, Desny told Wilder’s secretary that Wilder and Paramount could use the script only if they paid him a reasonable amount for doing so. Shortly thereafter, Wilder created his own movie script mirroring Densy’s. Because Densy’s script was based on historical facts, and because Desny only conveyed the bare minimum of those facts to Wilder’s secretary, both parties conceded for the purpose of the appeal that the synopsis was not sufficiently original to form the basis of a federal copyright claim. The Court, however, held that Densy stated sufficient facts to establish the existence of an implied-in-fact contract between the parties. The California Supreme Court explained that where an idea is furnished by one party to another, a contract sometimes may be implied even in the absence of an express promise to pay; a contract exists where “the circumstances preceding and attending disclosure, together with the conduct of the offeree acting with knowledge of the circumstances, show a promise to pay. Continue Reading An Idea Doesn’t Have to be Novel to be Stolen (In California)

In this episode of The Briefing by the IP Law BlogScott Hervey and Josh Escovedo discuss a dispute between the heirs of Evel Knievel and Disney, over claims of similarities between the late daredevil and the “Toy Story 4” character Duke Caboom. Continue Reading Heirs of Evel Knievel Clearly Do Not Have a Friend in Disney