Weekly Copyright Update

August 21, 2015

What’s the Real Cost of Defending Against Copyright Infringement?

Editor’s Note: I am frequently asked by church leaders if any churches have ever been sued for copyright infringement, and if they have, what kind of fines and fees did they have to pay. When it comes to copyright infringement lawsuits, it can be extremely costly for the organization being sued, even if it is settled out of court. Keli Johnson Swan writes an excellent article on the cost of defending software copyright infringement cases.

By Keli Johnson Swan: Sometimes, settlement negotiations break down and one or both parties resort to pursuing claims in court. In many instances, the auditing entity will pursue litigation if it believes that the audit target is refusing to participate in the audit process or is unwilling to reach an amicable resolution. In other instances, a company may choose to fight any potential copyright infringement claims in court rather than participate in an arbitrary auditing process defined by the publisher or auditing entity.

Are Royalty Payments Keeping Up with High Volume Music Streaming Numbers?

By Glenn Peoples: Billions were too small to measure the number of streams tracked by Next Big Sound in the first half of the year. In its mid-year reportissued this week, the music analytics company says it tracked a gigantic 1.03 trillion music streams from a host of popular streaming services.

“The mission here is full transparency in the music industry,” writes Next Big Sound, smartly acquired by Pandora three months ago in its report of social data on the music industry, in a report describing the growth of music streaming and social media’s impact on the business.

Company Claims Dorm Architectural Designs Violated Their Copyright

Editor’s Note: When I teach Copyrights 101, I explain that there are eight works of authorship that can be copyrighted under U.S. Copyright Law. I always leave “Architecture” as the last one of the eight and my students are almost always surprised. In fact, the blueprints for a building or structure can be and are often copyrighted. This story explains just how seriously one company takes protection of their copyrighted design.

By Matt McNab: A Maryland-based company is alleging that dorm designs at a local college violated the company’s copyrights. The architectural firm that designed the original residence halls at University of South Carolina Beaufort’s Hilton Head Gateway campus filed a lawsuit earlier this month in U.S. District Court, alleging the school’s administrative body and a local construction company violated its copyrights on the building designs when they built newer dorms in a similar style. Design Collective Inc. of Baltimore filed suit Aug. 6 in U.S. District Court in Beaufort against the Beaufort-Jasper Higher Education Commission and Fraser Construction.

Videographer Sues CBC and BBC for Showing His Storm Video without Permission

By Melinda Miller: If you were in Western New York last November, or if you knew anyone in Western New York last November, you probably made a point of seeing Alfonzo Cutaia’s incredible time-lapse video, “Buffalo Lake Effect.”

Looking south from his office in the Guaranty Building in downtown Buffalo, Cutaia had captured perfectly the mechanics of the historic storm. You can see the cold air moving over Lake Erie as it literally vacuums up the surface water to dump up to 8 feet of snow on the Southtowns.

Last week the videographer Cutaia filed a lawsuit in U.S. District Court accusing CBC and CNN of copyright infringement and with pirating the video from YouTube, according to Miller.

Editor’s Note: As of today, Cutaia’s video had about 3.2 million views on YouTube.

About Christian Copyright Solutions: CCS’s quest is to help churches and ministries “do music right.”  CCS is an expert on church music copyrights and our primary focus is providing licensing and clear educational resources to churches, as well as representation, administration and advocacy for copyright owners. Follow us on Twitter, and  Facebook. The information contained herein is for informational purposes only, and is not legal advice or a substitute for legal counsel.

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