Low Brow Lawyer Gossip!

Yes, it astounds me that there can even be such a thing. When I graduated from law school all those many years ago, if you had been able to explain to me what the Internet would be, and what a blog would be, and told me that someday there would be a blog devoted solely to lawyer gossip (things like what law students have been selected as Supreme Court clerks, lawyer weddings, lawyer sex, lawyers coming out of the closet, summer associate faux pas, interview faux pas, judges’ vacation haunts, rich lawyers, ugly lawyers, obnoxious lawyers, and more, seemingly ad infinitum … ), I would have thought you were barking, drooling mad.

Sadly, I would have been wrong. There is such a thing, at a blog called Above The Law, A Legal Tabloid. Jump at your own risk.… Read the full article

Geeks on the Beach

by Lee Gesmer on September 6, 2006

Geeks on the Beach

Ok, my family is a little geeky, I admit it.  We watch documentaries together more than we watch family friendly movies.  What do I discuss with my beautiful wife and exceptional 12 year old daughter as we walk along the beaches of Cape Cod?  They both love astronomy, and every year I remind my lovely daughter that there are more stars in the Universe than grains of sand on all the beaches of Earth. However, I’ve always had a nagging doubt about this – is it true? It seems just, well, inconceivable.

This year, upon returning to civilization (and a computer) I googled “are there more stars in the Universe than grains of sand on all the beaches of earth?” It turns out that scientists think about this stuff too. The first hit is an authoritative appearing article from North American Skies which reads –

In my astronomy classes I have often used the claim that there are “more stars in the heavens than all the grains of sand on all the beaches on Earth.” The claim is certainly not original with me, but I had always accepted it without question.

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An Update on Google Book Search

by Lee Gesmer on August 14, 2006

University of California joins in.

The University of California is joining Google’s book-scanning project, throwing the weight of another 100 academic libraries behind an ambitious venture that’s under legal attack for alleged copyright infringement.

Link here for full story. For an earlier and in depth discussion of this issue click here.… Read the full article

"Fantasy Baseball" Decision

by Lee Gesmer on August 10, 2006

[Update:] Matt Mattari sent me a link to his article on this topic, which was published in the Harvard Journal of Law & Technology before the publication of the decision. Click here to read the article (pdf file).
Here is a link (pdf file) to the federal district court decision in the C.B.C. Distribution and Marketing Inc. v. Major League Baseball Advanced Media and Major League Baseball Players’ Association case, issued on August 8, 2006.

Quoting from the decision:

The court finds that the undisputed facts establish that the players do not have a right of publicity in their names and playing records as used in CBC’s fantasy games and that CBC has not violated the players’ claimed right of publicity. The court further finds, alternatively, that even if the players have a claimed right of publicity, the First Amendment takes precedence over such a right. The court further finds that the undisputed facts establish that the names and playing records of Major League baseball players as used in CBC’s fantasy games are not copyrightable and, therefore, federal copyright law does not preempt the players’ claimed right of publicity.

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