Intellectual property law roundup

  • The law should not accord the state of Georgia a copyright over its code of law, even if the code has annotations [Trevor Burrus and Sam Spiegelman on Cato amicus certiorari brief in State of Georgia v. Public.Resource.Org, earlier here and here] And a transcript of today’s oral argument before the Supreme Court;
  • Update: federal judge Kaplan imposes sanctions on alleged “copyright troll” Richard Liebowitz, further complications ensue [Eugene Volokh, more, ABA Journal, earlier]
  • How Coca-Cola responds to flavor suggestions from fans on Twitter [Mike Masnick]
  • “California Man Gets Sued After Trying To Trademark Bully A Theme Park’ [Timothy Geigner, TechDirt]
  • “Like Righthaven before it, the Higbee firm has been taking advantage of hosts who failed to take the proper registration steps to perfect their DMCA immunity from copyright claims” [Paul Alan Levy and more, earlier here and here] And yet more;
  • “A root beer start-up, an energy drink company and an ugly trademark battle” [Andrew Yarrow, Washington Post/Keene Sentinel]


  • On the Coca-Cola twitter response, that’s actually not such a crazy thing, it’s just a pre-emptive strike against the ubiquitous “hey, that’s my idea! I sent it to Coke in 1987” lawsuits that come about when Coke puts out, say, acai-blackberry-guava Coke, and someone suggested it back in 1987.

  • Re: Copyright over its code of law…

    We have a similar problem in Canada with the CSA (Canadian Standards Association).
    They publish a book of standards which becomes law.

    Some of the contributors to these ‘standards’ are from the related industries.

    In addition, the CSA charges a lot of money to ‘certify’ various products, to ensure their ‘compliance’ with their standards. They also charge members to ‘participate’ in this process.

    One of the contributors also has been publishing an improved and cheaper copy of the standards book and is now being pursued in court by the CSA…

    P.S.Knight has been fighting for years and has a web site chronicling their struggle.