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Encyclopedia > Copyright misuse

Copyright misuse is an equitable defense against copyright infringement in the United States based on the unreasonable conduct of the copyright owner. This article is about concept of equity in Anglo-American jurisprudence. ... An affirmative defense is a defense used in litigation between private parties in common law jurisdictions. ... Copyright symbol. ... Copyright infringement (also known as piracy) is the unauthorized use of copyrighted material in a manner that violates one of the copyright owners exclusive rights, such as the right to reproduce or perform the copyrighted work, or to make derivative works that build upon it. ...


The doctrine forbids the copyright owner from attempting to secure an exclusive right or limited monopoly (usually through restrictive licensing practices) that is not granted by federal copyright law and is contrary to public policy. Finding that a copyright owner has engaged in misuse prevents the owner from enforcing his copyright through the securing of an injunction until he has "purged" himself of the misuseā€”i.e., ceased the restrictive practices. In law, an exclusive right is the power or right to perform an action in relation to an object or other thing which others cannnot perform. ... It has been suggested that Licensing (strategic alliance) be merged into this article or section. ... An injunction is an equitable remedy in the form of a court order that either prohibits or compels (restrains or enjoins) a party from continuing a particular activity. ...


Copyright misuse is not a defense recognized in the provisions of the federal Copyright Act but is instead purely founded in federal case law, beginning with a case in the Minnesota Federal District Court, M. Witmark & Sons v. Jensen, 80 F. Supp. 843 (D. Minn. 1948). The doctrine later met with approval from the Fourth Circuit in Lasercomb v. Reynolds, 911 F.2d 970 (4th Cir. 1990). Other leading cases in the area include Video Pipeline, Inc. v. Buena Vista Home Entertainment, 342 F.3d 191 (3d Cir. 2003) and Assessment Technologies v. WIREdata, 350 F.3d 640 (7th Cir. 2003). The Copyright Act of 1976 is the United States copyright law that was passed in 1976. ... Case law (precedential law) is the body of judge-made law and legal decisions that interprets prior case law, statutes and other legal authority -- including doctrinal writings by legal scholars such as the Corpus Juris Secundum, Halsburys Laws of England or the doctinal writings found in the Recueil Dalloz... The United States District Court for the District of Minnesota is the Federal district court whose jurisdiction is comprised of the state of Minnesota. ... Court citation is a standard system used in common law countries such as the United States, United Kingdom, Canada, New Zealand and Australia to uniquely identify the location of past court cases in special series of books called reporters. ... 1948 (MCMXLVIII) is a leap year starting on Thursday (link will take you to calendar). ... Legal Doctrine is a framework, set of rules, or procedural steps, often established through precedence in the common law, through which judgments can be determined in a given legal case. ... The United States Court of Appeals for the Fourth Circuit is a federal court with appellate jurisdiction over the following United States district courts: District of Maryland Western, Middle, and Eastern Districts of North Carolina District of South Carolina Western and Eastern Districts of Virginia Northern and Southern Districts of... Court citation is a standard system used in common law countries such as the United States, United Kingdom, Canada, New Zealand and Australia to uniquely identify the location of past court cases in special series of books called reporters. ... This article is about the year. ... Court citation is a standard system used in common law countries such as the United States, United Kingdom, Canada, New Zealand and Australia to uniquely identify the location of past court cases in special series of books called reporters. ... 2003 (MMIII) was a common year starting on Wednesday of the Gregorian calendar. ... Legal citation is the style of crediting and referencing other documents or sources of authority in legal writing. ... 2003 (MMIII) was a common year starting on Wednesday of the Gregorian calendar. ...


Copyright misuse is derived from the longstanding equitable doctrine of "unclean hands", which bars a party from asking for equitable relief (such as an injunction) against another when they have themselves acted improperly (though not necessarily illegally). Improper behaviour that may lead to a finding of copyright misuse includes (but is not limited to) anti-competitive activity. Unclean hands is an equitable defense in which the defendant argues that the plaintiff is not entitled to obtain an equitable remedy on account of the fact that the plaintiff is acting unethically or has acted in bad faith with respect to the subject of the complaint. ... It has been suggested that competition law be merged into this article or section. ...


See also

  • Patent misuse, which is analogous to the concept of copyright misuse.

  Results from FactBites:
 
Copyright - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia (6095 words)
Copyright is a type of intellectual property; designs or industrial designs may be a separate or overlapping form of intellectual property in some jurisdictions.
Copyright concepts are perceived to be under challenge in the modern technological era, from the increasing use of peer to peer filesharing, to the downward trend in profits for major record labels and the movie industry.
Another point of distinction is that a copyright (and a patent) is generally subject to a statutorily-determined term, whereas a trademark registration may remain in force indefinitely if the trademark is periodically used and renewal fees continue to be duly paid to the relevant jurisdiction's trade marks office or registry.
Digital Law Online: Copyright Misuse (756 words)
The copyright misuse doctrine is similar to the better-developed patent misuse doctrine.
The copyright misuse defense is similar to an antitrust claim, where a copyright owner has misused the limited monopoly granted by the copyright.
While the exact dimensions of the copyright misuse defense will be known only after considerably more cases are decided, its consequences should be considered by anyone who is trying to use his or her copyright to go beyond the protection of the copyright laws.
  More results at FactBites »

 
 

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