MassLawBlog Update, Week Ending January 10, 2014

by Lee Gesmer on January 10, 2014

  • As the week was ending the Supreme Court announced that it would hear the broadcasters’ appeal in the Aereo copyright case . . .
  • . . . as well as Limelight Networks v. Akamai Technologies, which originated in federal court in Boston. The issue in Akamai is whether a company be found to have induced someone else to infringe on a patent, when neither one has directly infringed on patent rights. See my blog post on the CAFC’s fractured en banc decision in this case.
  • Aereo receives $34 million in new funding. This would seem to represent a failure of legal due diligence by the investors (IMHO), as well as extremely bad timing.
  • Infographic claims that MegaUpload had 1 billion users, 50M daily visitors and represented 4% of global Internet traffic
  • Studios Win again in Fight Over User Content: Safe Harbors” Not so Safe, Websites Findin GigaOm, by John Jeff Roberts (in other words, when it comes to the DMCA the worm appears to be turning).
  • The European Commission has posted a lengthy questionnaire soliciting views on EU copyright policy from the public (including those outside the EU)
  • Trademark law: Fourth Circuit upholds district court finding that there is no likelihood of confusion between SWATCH (watches) and SWAP (interchangeable watch faces and bands). Swatch AG v. Beehive
  • Study finds that the rise of file sharing and the parallel decline in revenue has meant the creation of more new music, not less. Empirical Copyright: A Case Study of File Sharing and Music Output, Glynn S. Lunney, Jr. Techdirt summarizes the study.
  • Linkedin complaint vs. Does for scraping and otherwise illegally obtaining user profiles in order to create competing recruiting websites.
  • Ninth Circuit holds that shape of a hookah water container is not protected by copyright under “useful article” doctrine, affirms award of attorney’s fees to defendant by trial court and awards attorney’s fees on appeal. Inhale v. Starbuzz.
  • Top Ten Internet Law Developments of 2013, by Eric Goldman in Forbes. (Yes, Aereo is in there).
  • Defendant allegedly, unauthorizedly, provided Oracle customers with updates to Oracle software. N. Dist. Cal. denies motion to dismiss claims under CFAA, breach of contract, copyright infringement and Lanham Act. Oracle America v. TERiX Computer Company.

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