Friday, March 25, 2016

To boldly go where no copyright suit has gone before; Washington Post, 3/24/16

David Post, Washington Post; To boldly go where no copyright suit has gone before:
"Many of the infringement counts (based on similarities in costume design, backdrops, logos, and the like) look pretty straightforward to me, though I’ll be interested to see what arguments the defendants advance in support of their borrowings. [Fair use, which might ordinarily be counted on to give safe harbor to a fan film, might be difficult to sustain here, given the ostensibly commercial nature of the defendant’s production and the plaintiffs’ argument that the defendants have deprived them of licensing revenues to which they are entitled.]
At the same time, I can’t quite understand why Paramount and CBS are going to the litigation mat here, even if they have good legal grounds for doing so. In a nice twist, Justin Lin, who directs Paramount’s own “Star Trek Beyond,” scheduled for release in July, has come out against the suit (tweeting “This is getting ridiculous! I support the fans. Trek belongs to all of us!”), perhaps concerned that it will turn “Star Trek” fans against the whole enterprise (including his film)."

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