Williams v. Gaye Rules that Blurred Lines Infringes on the Copyright in “Got to Give it Up”

On Wednesday, March 21, 2018, the Ninth Circuit ruled that the song hit   song, Blurred Lines by artists, Pharell Williams, Robin Thicke and Clifford Harris Jr, infringed on the copyright in Marvin Gaye’s song Got to Give it Up. The panel of the appeals court affirmed that the award of actual damages, infringers’ profits and a running royalty were all proper. This decision will likely have several implications in IP law specifically on.. Read More

Anderson Corp. v. GED Integrated Sol., Inc.: The Future of AIA Derivation Proceedings

Under the pre-AIA first-to-invent regime, interference proceedings were available to contest which of two (or more) parties invented the claimed subject matter first. With the AIA’s shift to a first-to-file regime, interference proceedings have given way to derivative proceedings. Under the AIA, the first party to invent does not necessarily secure the patent, so interference proceedings no longer fit. Instead, derivation proceedings offer an alternate challenge on grounds of originality. Specifically, derivation proceedings.. Read More

YouTube’s Demonetization Debate: How Smaller YouTubers are Disproportionately Affected

I have been vaguely aware of YouTube’s practice of “demonetization” for some time, that which has something to do with ad revenues. However, it wasn’t until a recent tragedy at YouTube’s headquarters that I began to comprehend emotional and symbolic challenges smaller YouTubers (i.e. creators/owners of small YouTube channels) face because of demonetization. In this blog post, I briefly introduce the YouTube Partner Program (YPP), explore the arguments for and against the recent.. Read More

Machine Learning, Blockchain and an Inefficient Patent System

The digitalization of information and the implementation of computer-based processes in society has fundamentally changed how humans interact with the world and one another. Now, almost everyone in the US has access to an enormous pool of information in some form or another. While this is touted as the necessary step towards information equality, it is not without its problems. In a society where we demand efficient and accurate results, what happens when.. Read More

Is Using a Shared Netflix Password a Federal Crime?

Following the Ninth Circuit’s ruling in United States v. Nosal, 844 F.3d 1024 (9th Cir. 2016) (“Nosal II”), several commentators in the media queried whether using a borrowed password for streaming video on demand (SVOD) services such as Netflix and HBO Go constitutes a criminal violation of the Computer Fraud and Abuse Act (“CFAA”), 18 U.S.C. § 1030. Time reported, for example, that “[t]he act of sharing Netflix passwords has apparently been decreed.. Read More

Life in the Fast Lane? The Death of Net Neutrality 

On Feb. 22nd, the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) published a new rule overturning net neutrality. Aptly named the “Restoring Internet Freedom” order, it directly repealed the previous “Open Internet Order” put in place in 2015 raising alarm bells all across the country. Reactions ranged from heralding the coming of Doomsday for the internet to celebration over the “freeing”  of the internet from overregulation by the government. Although a litany of states have filed.. Read More

Music Modernization Act: A Bill to Help Songwriters Pay Their Bills?

In the past twenty years, the state of the music industry has changed dramatically. Between 1998 and 2014, the industry was in crisis. Total revenue from U.S. music sales and licensing dropped from $15 billion to $7 billion. CD sales were on the decline, pirating was on the rise, and even when consumers purchased their music legally, they tended towards buying .99 cent singles rather than full albums. Since 2014, streaming has taken.. Read More

Spotify’s IPO!

Spotify (SPOT), the music streaming service, is expected to begin trading on April 3. This IPO is one to watch by all fans of music, technology, and finance.   What is Spotify?   Spotify is a music, podcast and video streaming service from Stockholm, Sweden. It came to the United States in 2010 and has been booming ever since.  Spotify has about 159 million monthly active users and 71 million subscribers for its.. Read More

Self-Driving Cars: Negligence, Product Liability, and Warranties

Nearly 1.3 million people die in car accidents each year, amounting to an average of roughly 3,287 deaths a day. Hopefully, with the advent of self-driving cars, that number will begin to drop precipitously. Unlike human beings, the technology behind these autonomous vehicles yields the safest results in every thought out scenario, by using complex algorithms. People can drive drunk, get distracted by text messages, or lack the reflexes to brake in time;.. Read More

Has AI Killed the Copyright Star?

For over 300 years, copyright law has been central to innovation and design, protecting artists, innovators, and creators. Rapid technological development over the past few decades has necessitated new interpretations and applications of the law in order to maintain this function. Although complex in application, the copyright framework has managed to integrate these new technologies. Fast-developing Artificial Intelligence (AI), however, poses a challenge to the protective dimension of copyright law.   The digitally-driven.. Read More