LexisNexis® Legal Newsroom
Mealey's IP/Tech - Usenet Provider Opposes 9th Circuit Rehearing Over Vicarious Liability

PASADENA, Calif. - A Ninth Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals panel correctly found that it was not liable for its users' posting of copyrighted adult pictures, a usenet service provider asserts in an April 10 brief opposing an adult entertainment firm's petition for rehearing, arguing that the panel applied the correct standard for determining vicarious liability (Perfect 10 Inc. v. Giganews Inc., et al., No. 15-55500, 15-55523 and 15-56026, 9th Cir.).

Mealey's PI/Product Liability - Federal Judge Excludes Engineer's Testimony On Safety In Area At Sea World

SAN DIEGO - A safety engineer and accident reconstruction expert may not testify regarding Sea World LLC's liability relating to the safety of an area at the time of a woman's accident while visiting the park, a California federal judge held March 17 (Eusebia Baltazar v. Sea World Parks Entertainment LLC, No. 15-2893, S.D. Calif.; 2017 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 39039).

Mealey's Litigation Procedure - Federal Judge Excludes Engineer's Testimony On Safety In Area At Sea World

SAN DIEGO - A safety engineer and accident reconstruction expert may not testify regarding Sea World LLC's liability relating to the safety of an area at the time of a woman's accident while visiting the park, a California federal judge held March 17 (Eusebia Baltazar v. Sea World Parks Entertainment LLC, No. 15-2893, S.D. Calif.; 2017 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 39039).

Mealey's Litigation Procedure - Federal Judge Trims Claims In LeapFrog Securities Class Action

SAN FRANCISCO - A lead plaintiff in a securities class action has failed to show that a developer of educational entertainment for children and two of its executive officers acted with scienter in failing to report goodwill impairment for the second quarter of 2015, but the lead plaintiff has pleaded scienter regarding the defendants' failure to take certain write-offs in the third quarter of the fiscal year, a federal judge in California ruled Feb. 24 in granting in part and denying in part the defendants' motion to dismiss (In re LeapFrog Enterprises Inc. Securities Litigation, No. 15-0347, N.D. Calif., 2017 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 26398).

Mealey's Securities/D&O Liability - Federal Judge Trims Claims In LeapFrog Securities Class Action

SAN FRANCISCO - A lead plaintiff in a securities class action has failed to show that a developer of educational entertainment for children and two of its executive officers acted with scienter in failing to report goodwill impairment for the second quarter of 2015, but the lead plaintiff has pleaded scienter regarding the defendants' failure to take certain write-offs in the third quarter of the fiscal year, a federal judge in California ruled Feb. 24 in granting in part and denying in part the defendants' motion to dismiss (In re LeapFrog Enterprises Inc. Securities Litigation, No. 15-0347, N.D. Calif., 2017 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 26398).

Mealey's PI/Product Liability - Michigan Appeals Panel Affirms Summary Disposition In Slip-And-Fall Suit

DETROIT - A Michigan appeals panel on Jan. 26 affirmed the grant of summary disposition to the owner of a casino after finding that a man who slipped on ice on the casino's property failed to prove that the ice was not an open and obvious hazard and that there were no "special aspects" to the hazard (Zouhair Hakim v. Detroit Entertainment LLC, No. 329006, Mich. App., 2017 Mich. App. LEXIS 160).

Mealey's IP/Tech - 9th Circuit Finds Usenet Provider Not Liable For Infringement Of Adult Pictures

PASADENA, Calif. - An adult entertainment site operator failed to establish that a usenet provider acted volitionally in or obtained any direct financial benefit from its users' infringing of the site's copyrighted images, a Ninth Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals panel ruled Jan. 23, affirming dismissal of direct and indirect infringement claims against the defendant (Perfect 10 Inc. v. Giganews Inc., et al., No. 15-55500, 15-55523 and 15-56026, 9th Cir.).

Mealey's Litigation Procedure - Porn Firm Tells 6th Circuit Downloader Failed To Show Prejudice In Dismissal

CINCINNATI - In a Jan. 13 appellee brief filed in the Sixth Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals, an adult entertainment company says that its abandoned infringement claim against an accused file sharer was properly dismissed with prejudice because of the defendant's dilatory discovery conduct and to serve judicial economy (Malibu Media LLC v. David Ricupero, No. 16-3628, 6th Cir.).

Mealey's IP/Tech - Porn Firm Tells 6th Circuit Downloader Failed To Show Prejudice In Dismissal

CINCINNATI - In a Jan. 13 appellee brief filed in the Sixth Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals, an adult entertainment company says that its abandoned infringement claim against an accused file sharer was properly dismissed with prejudice because of the defendant's dilatory discovery conduct and to serve judicial economy (Malibu Media LLC v. David Ricupero, No. 16-3628, 6th Cir.).

Mealey's IP/Tech - 9th Circuit: Dismissal Of Karaoke Company's Trademark Case Was Proper

SAN FRANCISCO - Allegations by a karaoke music producer that a defendant's practice of "media-shifting" karaoke tracks from physical compact discs to digital files violates the Lanham Act were correctly dismissed by an Arizona federal judge, the Ninth Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals ruled Jan. 18 (Slep-Tone Entertainment Corporation v. Wired for Sound Karaoke and DJ Services LLC, No. 14-17229, 9th Cir.).

Mealey's IP/Tech - 8th Circuit Upholds Injunction, Award In Copyright, Trademark Case

ST. LOUIS - A Missouri federal judge's decision to permanently enjoin four defendants from licensing images or phrases from the iconic films Gone with the Wind and The Wizard of Oz as well as images from the animated Tom and Jerry short films was affirmed Nov. 1 by the Eighth Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals (Warner Bros. Entertainment Inc. v. X One X Productions, et al., No. 15-3728, 8th Cir.; 2016 U.S. App. LEXIS 19671).

Mealey's PI/Product Liability - WWE Moves To Dismiss Final Claims In Consolidated Concussion Suit

HARTFORD, Conn. - World Wrestling Entertainment Inc. (WWE) on Oct. 19 moved to dismiss the complaint of the remaining plaintiffs in a consolidated suit alleging that the WWE failed to warn them about the dangers of concussions, saying the claims brought by the former wrestlers are all time-barred (Russ McCullough, et al. v. World Wrestling Entertainment Inc., No. 15-1074, D. Conn.).

Mealey's IP/Tech - New York Federal Judge: No Sanctions For Attorney In Copyright, Lanham Act Case

NEW YORK - Although finding "much to criticize" in the conduct of an attorney who advanced allegations of copyright infringement and violations of the Lanham Act in a third-party action against Viacom and others, a New York federal judge on Oct. 5 nonetheless declined a request for sanctions in the case (Scrilla Hill Entertainment Inc., et al. v. Bianca Dupree, et al., No. 16-490, S.D. N.Y.; 2016 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 138346).

Mealey's PI/Product Liability - 2nd Circuit Dismisses Appeals From Former Professional Wrestlers

NEW YORK - The Second Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals on Sept. 27 dismissed two appeals brought by two groups of former professional wrestlers who argued that their claims that World Wrestling Entertainment Inc. (WWE) hid the dangers of brain injuries from the wrestlers were improperly dismissed by the lower court because there is nothing in the wrestlers' appellate briefs that "overcomes the strong presumption that the judgment is not appealable" (Russ McCullough, et al. v. World Wrestling Entertainment Inc., No. 16-1231, 2nd Cir.; 2016 U.S. App. LEXIS 17519).

Mealey's IP/Tech - 7th Circuit Vacates Injunction In Dispute Over 'Bug Off' Trademark

CHICAGO - A Wisconsin federal judge abused his discretion and clearly erred when he "entertained" and accepted post-trial arguments by a plaintiff that a defendant failed to prove continuous use of the "Bug Off" trademark after 2012 when the parties' dispute was clearly centered on pre-2012 use, the Seventh Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals ruled Aug. 25 (S.C. Johnson & Son Inc. v. Nutraceutical Corporation, No. 15-3337, 7th Cir.; 2016 U.S. App. LEXIS 15709).

Mealey's Labor & Employment - Preliminary Approval Granted In Settlement Of Fox Unpaid Interns' Class Suit

NEW YORK - A New York federal judge on Aug. 12 granted preliminary approval of a settlement in a class complaint filed by unpaid interns working at divisions of Fox Searchlight Pictures Inc. and Fox Entertainment Group Inc. (collectively, Fox) that will provide a payment of $495 to all members of two settlement classes who submit a valid claim form (Eric Glatt, et al. v. Fox Searchlight Pictures, Inc., et al., No. 11-6784, S.D. N.Y.).

Mealey's Litigation Procedure - Preliminary Approval Granted In Settlement Of Fox Unpaid Interns' Class Suit

NEW YORK - A New York federal judge on Aug. 12 granted preliminary approval of a settlement in a class complaint filed by unpaid interns working at divisions of Fox Searchlight Pictures Inc. and Fox Entertainment Group Inc. (collectively, Fox) that will provide a payment of $495 to all members of two settlement classes who submit a valid claim form (Eric Glatt, et al. v. Fox Searchlight Pictures, Inc., et al., No. 11-6784, S.D. N.Y.).

Mealey's Insurance - Panel: Excess Insurer Has Alleged Viable Equitable Subrogation, Bad Faith Claims

LOS ANGELES - A California appeals panel on Aug. 5 held that the lack of an excess judgment against Warner Brothers Entertainment Inc. in an underlying employment injury dispute that settled does not preclude the equitable subrogation and breach of the duty of good faith and fair dealing lawsuit that the entertainment company's excess insurer brought against its primary insurer (Ace American Insurance Co. v. Fireman's Fund Insurance Co., No. B264861, Calif. App., 2nd Dist., Div. 4; 2016 Cal. App. LEXIS 647).

Mealey's PI/Product Liability - WWE Moves For Sanctions Against Plaintiffs' Attorneys In Concussion Suit

HARTFORD, Conn. - World Wrestling Entertainment Inc. on Aug. 8 asked a federal judge in Connecticut to impose sanctions against the attorneys for two former wrestlers in a consolidated concussion suit because the attorneys allegedly drafted and signed off on false responses to a court's compulsion order that were submitted to the WWE (Russ McCullough, et al. v. World Wrestling Entertainment Inc., No. 15-1074, D. Conn.).

Mealey's PI/Product Liability - WWE Moves To Dismiss Last Claim In Head Injuries Suit

HARTFORD, Conn. - World Wrestling Entertainment Inc. (WWE) on Aug. 1 moved a Connecticut federal court for summary judgment on the final claim against it brought by two former professional wrestlers in a consolidated concussion suit, saying there is no "genuine dispute as to any fact material to Plaintiffs' fraud by omission claim" (Russ McCullough, et al. v. World Wrestling Entertainment Inc., No. 15-1074, D. Conn.).

Mealey's IP/Tech - 2nd Circuit Vacates Copyright Holding In Favor Of Sony

NEW YORK - A New York federal judge's rejection of copyright infringement claims against Sony Music Entertainment - based upon a determination that the "Iron Man" composition was a work for hire commissioned by Marvel Comics - was vacated July 29 by the Second Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals, which found that material fact issues regarding ownership should have precluded summary judgment (Jack Urbont v. Sony Music Entertainment et al., No. 15-1778, 2nd Cir.; 2016 U.S. App. LEXIS 13775).

Mealey's Labor & Employment - California Federal Judge Refuses To Decertify Class In Rounding Time Suit

SAN DIEGO - A California federal judge on July 25 denied a motion to decertify a class of workers suing over their employer's rounding practices based on a recent decision by the Ninth Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals in Corbin v. Time Warner Entertainment-Advance/Newhouse Partnership (821 F.3d 1069 [9th Cir. 2016]) (Naomi Tapia, et al. v. Zale Delaware Inc., No. 13-1565, S.D. Calif.; 2016 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 96801).

Mealey's Litigation Procedure - California Federal Judge Refuses To Decertify Class In Rounding Time Suit

SAN DIEGO - A California federal judge on July 25 denied a motion to decertify a class of workers suing over their employer's rounding practices based on a recent decision by the Ninth Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals in Corbin v. Time Warner Entertainment-Advance/Newhouse Partnership (821 F.3d 1069 [9th Cir. 2016]) (Naomi Tapia, et al. v. Zale Delaware Inc., No. 13-1565, S.D. Calif.; 2016 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 96801).

Mealey's PI/Product Liability - 2 Former Wrestlers' Fraud Claims Against WWE Will Continue, Federal Judge Says

HARTFORD, Conn. - A federal judge in Connecticut on July 21 denied World Wrestling Entertainment Inc.'s (WWE) motion to reconsider a previous order in which she allowed fraud by omission claims brought by two former professional wrestlers to proceed to trial because the wrestlers properly alleged harm caused by the WWE (Russ McCullough, et al. v. World Wrestling Entertainment Inc., No. 15-1074, D. Conn.).

Mealey's IP/Tech - 7th Circuit Affirms: Use Of Karaoke Tracks Unlikely To Confuse

CHICAGO - A plaintiff responsible for bringing more than 150 trademark lawsuits across the country was properly rebuffed in its effort to hold a pub and its owner liable for playing unauthorized digital copies of various karaoke tracks, the Seventh Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals ruled July 21 (Slep-Tone Entertainment Corp., et al. v. Danette Rumsey, et al., No. 15-2844, 7th Cir.; 2016 U.S. App. LEXIS 13306).