LexisNexis® Legal Newsroom
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).

Mealey's PI/Product Liability - Former Wrestlers Sue WWE, Chairman Over Brain Injuries

NEW HAVEN, Conn. - A group of former professional wrestlers who sustained long-term neurological injuries sued World Wrestling Entertainment Inc. (WWE) and its chairman, Vince McMahon, in a Connecticut federal court on July 18, claiming that the entity failed to inform and protect them from the danger of repeated head injuries (Joseph M. Laurinaitis, a.k.a. Road Warrior Animal, et al. v. World Wrestling Entertainment, Inc., et al., No. 16-1209, D. Conn.).

Mealey's IP/Tech - CGL Insurer Has No Duty To Defend Against Copyright Claims, Federal Judge Rules

AUSTIN, Texas - A Texas federal judge on June 17 held that a commercial general liability insurer has no duty to defend its insureds against copyright claims because the underlying complaint fails to allege any unauthorized use of an adult entertainment company's copyrighted advertising materials, slogan or title in the insureds' advertising (St. Paul Fire and Marine Insurance Co. v. Giganews Inc., et al., No. 15-89, W.D. Texas; 2016 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 79535).

Mealey's Insurance - CGL Insurer Has No Duty To Defend Against Copyright Claims, Federal Judge Rules

AUSTIN, Texas - A Texas federal judge on June 17 held that a commercial general liability insurer has no duty to defend its insureds against copyright claims because the underlying complaint fails to allege any unauthorized use of an adult entertainment company's copyrighted advertising materials, slogan or title in the insureds' advertising (St. Paul Fire and Marine Insurance Co. v. Giganews Inc., et al., No. 15-89, W.D. Texas; 2016 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 79535).

Mealey's Labor & Employment - 9th Circuit Upholds Rejection Of Timekeeping Rounding Class Claims

PASADENA, Calif. - A California federal court properly dismissed a call center employee's rounding and unpaid wage claims and, because judgment on the rounding claim was affirmed, there is no need for reconsideration of a motion for class certification, a Ninth Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals panel ruled May 2 (Andre Corbin, et al. v. Time Warner Entertainment Advance/Newhouse Partnership, No. 13-55622, 9th Cir.; 2016 U.S. App. LEXIS 7896).

Mealey's Litigation Procedure - 9th Circuit Upholds Rejection Of Timekeeping Rounding Class Claims

PASADENA, Calif. - A California federal court properly dismissed a call center employee's rounding and unpaid wage claims and, because judgment on the rounding claim was affirmed, there is no need for reconsideration of a motion for class certification, a Ninth Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals panel ruled May 2 (Andre Corbin, et al. v. Time Warner Entertainment Advance/Newhouse Partnership, No. 13-55622, 9th Cir.; 2016 U.S. App. LEXIS 7896).

Mealey's IP/Tech - Preliminary Injunction In Trademark Case Upheld By 11th Circuit

ATLANTA - A co-founder and original member of The Commodores was properly ordered to refrain from using the band's name while promoting his own musical performances, the 11th Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals ruled April 15 (Commodores Entertainment Corp. v. Thomas McClary, et al., No. 14-14883, 11th Cir.; 2016 U.S. App. LEXIS 6836).

Mealey's Insurance - Judge Finds Policy Void Due To Misrepresentation On Policy Application

WASHINGTON, D.C. - A federal judge in the District of Columbia on April 13 awarded summary judgment to Nationwide Mutual Fire Insurance Co., finding that a property owner's misrepresentation that a business on the site was a delicatessen rather than an entertainment venue that served alcohol was material and warranted voiding the policy (Nationwide Mutual Fire Insurance Co. v. Almco Ltd., et al., No. 13-1009, D. D.C.; 2016 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 49358).

Mealey's PI/Product Liability - WWE Asks Federal Court To Reconsider Decision, Dismiss 3rd Case

HARTFORD, Conn. - World Wrestling Entertainment Inc. (WWE) on April 4 asked a federal judge in Connecticut to reconsider her order dismissing only two of three consolidated cases against it, saying the third case should also be dismissed (Russ McCullough, et al. v. World Wrestling Entertainment Inc., No. 15-1074, D. Conn.).

Mealey's PI/Product Liability - Federal Judges Dismisses 2 Suits Against WWE Brought By Former Wrestlers

HARTFORD, Conn. - A federal judge in Connecticut on March 21 dismissed the second amended complaints in two separate consolidated brain injury suits against the World Wrestling Entertainment Inc. (WWE) and dismissed all but one claim from a third complaint (Russ McCullough, et al. v. World Wrestling Entertainment Inc., No. 15-1074, D. Conn.).

Mealey's Litigation Procedure - Judge: Investors Failed To Plead Scienter, Actionable Misstatements

NEW YORK - Dismissal of a consolidated amended securities class action complaint against a Chinese developer and publisher of mobile games and certain of its executive officers is proper because shareholders failed to plead any actionable misrepresentations or omissions or scienter in making their federal securities law claims, a federal judge in New York ruled March 7 (In re China Mobile Games & Entertainment Group Ltd. Securities Litigation, No. 14-4471, S.D. N.Y.; 2016 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 29258).

Mealey's Securities/D&O Liability - Judge: Investors Failed To Plead Scienter, Actionable Misstatements

NEW YORK - Dismissal of a consolidated amended securities class action complaint against a Chinese developer and publisher of mobile games and certain of its executive officers is proper because shareholders failed to plead any actionable misrepresentations or omissions or scienter in making their federal securities law claims, a federal judge in New York ruled March 7 (In re China Mobile Games & Entertainment Group Ltd. Securities Litigation, No. 14-4471, S.D. N.Y.; 2016 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 29258).

Mealey's Litigation Procedure - Blind Moviegoers Sue AMC For Failing To Maintain Audio Equipment

SAN FRANCISCO - Five blind individuals and two organizations filed a class complaint in California federal court on Feb. 16 accusing AMC Entertainment Inc., AMC Entertainment Holdings Inc. and American Multi-Cinema Inc. of failing to maintain audio description equipment for blind customers to use (Scott Blanks, et al. v. AMC Entertainment Inc., et al., No. 16-765, N.D. Calif.).

Mealey's Labor & Employment - Dismissal Denied In Suit Accusing Dave & Buster's Of Interference Under ERISA

NEW YORK - A New York federal judge on Feb. 9 denied Dave & Buster's Inc.'s motion to dismiss a lawsuit accusing the nationwide restaurant/entertainment chain of violating the Employee Retirement Income Security Act by reducing the hours of its work force in 2013 to avoid the costs associated with providing health insurance to its full-time employees in compliance with the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act (ACA) (Maria De Lourdes Parra Marin v. Dave & Buster's, Inc., et al., No. 15-3608, S.D. N.Y.).

Mealey's IP/Tech - Iron Man Body Armor Copyright Case Dismissed By Massachusetts Federal Judge

BOSTON - Marvel Entertainment LLC and other defendants won dismissal Feb. 9 of copyright infringement allegations levied in connection with the body armor worn by the popular character Iron Man (Horizon Comics Production v. Marvel Entertainment LLC, et al., No. 15-11684, D. Mass.; 2016 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 15659).

Mealey's IP/Tech - Magistrate Finds No Evidence Doe Defendant Downloaded Copyrighted Adult Films

CHICAGO - An adult entertainment firm failed to provide evidence that an accused defendant downloaded and shared 24 of its copyrighted movies, an Illinois federal magistrate judge ruled Feb. 8, granting the defendant's motion for summary judgment (Malibu Media LLC v. John Doe, No. 1:13-cv-06312, N.D. Ill.; 2016 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 14798).

Mealey's Litigation Procedure - Federal Judge Precludes Testimony In Class Action Suit Against Cable Company

CENTRAL ISLIP, N.Y. - A media and entertainment industry expert may not testify on damages suffered by cable subscribers because his testimony erroneously amounts to legal conclusions, a New York federal judge ruled Dec. 28, excluding the testimony in a class action lawsuit against Cablevision Systems Corp. (Theodore Pearlman, et al. v. Cablevision Systems Corp., No. 10-4992, E.D. N.Y.; 2015 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 172080).

Mealey's IP/Tech - Copyright Claims By Video Game Developers Dismissed In California

SAN FRANCISCO - Allegations of copyright infringement levied in connection with mobile games fail to state a plausible claim, a California federal judge ruled Dec. 8 (Blizzard Entertainment Inc., et al. v. Lilith Games [Shanghai] Co. Ltd., et al., No. 15-4084, N.D. Calif.; 2015 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 164527).

Mealey's IP/Tech - Former File-Sharing Defendant Defends Attorneys' Sanctions, Awards To 7th Circuit

CHICAGO - A man that had previously been the defendant in an adult entertainment firm's copyright infringement suit told the Seventh Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals in his Nov. 30 appellee brief that a trial court properly sanctioned two of the firm's attorneys for obstructing discovery and for making misleading statements regarding their ability to pay previously issued sanctions against them (Lightspeed Media Corp., et al. v. Anthony Smith, et al., No. 15-2440, 7th Cir.).

Mealey's Litigation Procedure - Gawker Seeks To Compel State Department Affidavits In Clinton Emails FOIA Suit

WASHINGTON, D.C. - In light of the provision of previously unknown and possibly responsive records pertaining to its Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) lawsuit seeking to compel communications related to Hillary Clinton's use of a personal email account during her tenure as secretary of State, news and entertainment media website operator Gawker Media LLC moved in District of Columbia federal court on Nov. 18 to compel affidavits from certain government personnel regarding the email use and record production of former Deputy Assistant Secretary of State Philippe Reines (Gawker Media LLC, et al. v. Department of State, No. 1:15-cv-00363, D. D.C.).