The famous author testified in a Manhattan courtroom in her case against RDR Books, publisher of a “Harry Potter Lexicon” that her lawyers say is at best a derivative knock-off of her work; the WSJ law blog’s Dan Slater has coverage here, here, and here. We covered the suit Jan. 29.
One of the many things I like about my girlfriend is that she’s the one who wants us to get a bigger television. Of course, if we got too big a television, we might not be able to hold our annual Super Bowl party: the NFL is sending around its annual set of scare letters to anyone offering a public exhibition of the Super Bowl on a television larger than 55 inches. (Jacqueline L. Salmon, WaPo, “NFL Pulls Plug On Big-Screen Church Parties For Super Bowl”, Feb. 1). Yes, you’ve seen this story before: Feb. 3 and Jan. 31 last year.
Update: and at the WSJ ($).
Initial reports had it that the car company’s lawyers were objecting to fans’ putting out a calendar adorned with pictures they’d taken themselves of their beloved Mustangs. Later, the company said it was fine with the fans’ publishing the photos and calendars so long as they didn’t use the Ford logo. (AdRants, Jan. 14; Culture Garage, Jan. 11).
“There is a necessary and healthy line between what the initial author owns and what follow-on, or ‘secondary,’ authors get to do, and [author J.K.] Rowling is running over that line like the Hogwarts Express.” With mention of Judge Posner’s 2002 Beanie Baby decision (Tim Wu, “J.K. Rowling’s Dark Mark”, Slate, Jan. 10).
Not only does this post allow me to celebrate one of my favorite judges, but I can also use this platform to note that Kenny Lofton was out: not because he didn’t beat Manny Ramirez’s throw into second base (he did), but because he bounced off the bag afterwards while still being tagged.
- Hush up with those jokes, now: Lerach Coughlin lawyer hailed as hero after jumping from his BMW to save pregnant woman attacked by pit bulls [ABA Journal]
- The “murky area between zealous advocacy and improper conduct”: Judge Preska sanctions Cleary Gottlieb for litigation abuse [WSJ Law Blog, Lat]
- Out-nannying them all? Edwards says his health plan will legally oblige everyone to go in for checkups with the doc [AP; MagicStats, Howard, Althouse]
- Apparently we missed out on the Aug. 31 celebration of Love Lawyers Day [Giacalone]
- To settle lawsuit by psychiatrist’s family, Augusten Burroughs agrees to call “Running with Scissors” a “book” rather than “memoir” [Althouse]
- Will contest over Maryland judge’s estate has dragged on for fourteen years [Washington Post]
- Recap of Flea fiasco (doc liveblogging his own trial); we get randomly mentioned [American Medical News; earlier]
- “Viacom charges man with violating his own copyright, after he YouTubed their program that used his video.” [Reynolds](but see: Evan Brown via Coleman]
- Is your lawyer a “chicken catcher” or a “chicken plucker”? [KevinMD]
- When if ever should “best interest” custody standard override parent’s right to free exercise of opinion, religion, cultural affiliation, etc.? [series of Eugene Volokh posts]
- Don’t forget to join our new Facebook group with distinctive content [if you’re a member]
- New at Point of Law: Texas judge’s son withdraws from odometer class action; what do environmentalist litigators have against whales?; N.Y. Times’s born-yesterday Vioxx coverage (and this from Ted, which is pretty devastating); Dickie Scruggs takes down an insurance commissioner; sexual assault foreseeable when fraternity left in possession of unsupervised motel room? Marshall, Texas dignitaries rally to save their special court; and much more.
Updating earlier stories:
- The Judge Pearson consumer fraud suit starts today. It’s exceedingly silly, but ATLA’s attack on Judge Pearson is hypocritical: the only difference between this consumer fraud suit and the consumer fraud suits ATLA supports is that it’s an African-American pro se going against a shallow pocket instead of a well-funded bunch of millionaires going against a deep pocket. The Fisher blog @ WaPo notes a publicity-stunt settlement offer. [via TaxProf blog]
- Wesley Snipes playing the race card in his tax evasion prosecution would have more resonance if his white co-defendant weren’t still in jail while he’s out on bail. [Tax Prof; earlier, Nov. 22]
- “Party mom host set for Virginia jail term” for daring to ensure high school students didn’t drink and drive by providing a safe haven for underage drinking. Earlier: June 2005. [WaPo]
- Sorry, schadenfreude fans: Fred Baron settles with Baron & Budd. [Texas Lawyer; earlier Sep. 4]
- Blackmail-through-civil discovery lawyer Ted Roberts (Mar. 19 and links therein) seeks new trial. [Texas Lawyer]
- Second Circuit doesn’t quite yet decide Ehrenfeld v. Bin Mahfouz libel tourism suit (Oct. 2003). [Bashman roundup of links]
- NFL drops claims to trademarking “The Big Game” as a euphemism for the trademarked “Super Bowl” (Jan. 31) [Lattman]
- More on the Supreme Court’s “fake mental retardation to get out of the death penalty” decision, Atkins v. Virginia (Feb. 2005; Sep. 2003). [LA Times]
- What does Overlawyered favorite Rex deGeorge (Sep. 2004) have to do with The Apprentice? [Real Estalker]
A classic, from TechDirt (Oct. 30):
It appears that Universal Studios recognize that the followers of the cult favorite TV show Firefly would be a great source of viral marketing for the movie based on the show, Serenity. They put together a huge viral marketing campaign…. However, as with so many of these things, it appears that the marketers at Universal forgot to tell the lawyers at Universal, who recently decided to send out cease and desist letters to a bunch of the guerilla marketers they had pushed to promote the film.
More: Tijir, Oct. 28.