List of leading legal cases in copyright law

The following is a list of cases that deal with issues of concern to copyright in various jurisdictions. Some of these cases are leading English cases as the law of copyright in various Commonwealth jurisdictions developed out of English law while these countries were colonies of the British Empire. Other cases provide background in areas of copyright law that may be of interest for the legal reasoning or the conclusions they reach.
Please note: Wikipedia does not give legal advice.

A B C D E F G H I J K L M N O P Q R S T U V W X Y Z

A

B

  • Bauer & Cie. v. O'Donnell (1913) US Supreme Court- Differences between patent and copyright defined also prohibits license to extend holders rights beyond statute.
  • Bobbs-Merrill Co v. Straus (1908) US Supreme Court- No license to use copyrighted material. License cannot extend holders rights beyond statute defined by congress.
  • Bridgeman Art Library Ltd. v. Corel Corporation, 36 F. Supp. 2d 191, US SDNY (1999) photograph of public domain work is not original([1])

C

  • Campbell v. Acuff-Rose Music (1994) 510 U.S. 569 (commercial parody is fair use (USA))
  • Carter v. Helmsley-Spear Inc 861 F. Supp. 303 (S.D.N.Y., 1994), [interpreting moral rights provisions of U.S. Visual Artists Rights Act, overturned for other reasons, 71 F.3d 77, 80 (2d Cir. 1995), cert. denied 116 S. Ct. 1824 (1996) (USA)]
  • CBS Records v. Gross (1989) 15 IPR 385 (a cover version of a song can be an original work itself capable of copyright protection (Aus.))
  • Computer Edge Pty Ltd v Apple Computer Inc (1986) 161 CLR 171 (test in Exxon for literary work is "not intended to establish a comprehensive or exhasutive definition of literary work for copyright purposes" per Mason and Wilson JJ (Aus.))
  • Corelli v. Grey (1913) 29 TLR 570 (four reasons for clear objective similarity between works)
  • Cuisenaire v Reed [1963] VR 719 (a literary work cannot be infringed by a three-dimensional reproduction (Aus.))

D

E

F

G

  • Grand Upright Music Ltd v. Warner Bros Records 91 Civ 7648 SDNY (1991) (music sampling is copyright infringement (US))
  • Green v. Broadcasting Corp of NZ (1989) APIC 90-590 (Privy Council definition of "dramatic works": " a dramatic work must have sufficient unity to be capable of performance" (NZ))
  • Greenfield Products Pty Ltd v Rover-Scott Bonnar Ltd (1990) 17 IPR 417 per Pincus J, what is not a sculpture (Aus))

H

  • Hawkes &Son (London) Ltd v Paramount Film Service Ltd [1934] 1 Ch 593 (the "Colonel Bogey" case - infringement of copyright occurs when "a substantial, a vital and an essential part" of a work is copied, per Lord Slesser (UK))

I

  • Itar-Tass Russian News Agency v. Russian Kurier, Inc, 153 F.3d 82 (2d Cir. 1998).

J

  • Jockey Club v. Standen (1985) 8 C.P.R.(3d) 283, 288 (B.C.C.A.) [Judicial decisions have no © (Canada)]

K

  • Kelly v. Arriba Soft Corporation, (1999) U.S. App. LEXIS 1786 (fair use, thumbnails & inline linking [U.S.])
  • Basic Books, Inc. v. Kinko's Graphics Corporation (1991) 758 F. Supp. 1522 SDNY, copies of articles for educational use --> not fair use

L

  • Ladbroke (Football) Ltd v. William Hill (Football) Ltd [1964]1 WLR 273
  • LB (Plastics) Ltd v Swish Products Ltd [1979] RPC 551 (the basis of copyright protection is that "one man must not be able to appropriate the result of another's labour")

M

N

O

P

Q

R

S

T

U

V

W

X

Y

  • Yumbulul v Reserve Bank of Australia (1991) 21 IPR 481 ("copyright law does not provide adequate protection of Aboriginal community claims to regulate the reporoduction and use of works which are essentially communal in origin" (Aus.))

Z

  • Zeccola v. Universal City Studios Inc (1982) 46 ALR 189 (there is no copyright the idea of a theme or a story, but there may be a time where a combination of events and characters reaches sufficient complexity as to give rise to dramatic work compyright (Aus.))

This article is a stub. If you are knowledgeable in this subject area please feel free to improve it. As this is a list of leading legal cases improving it means that you should add other leading legal cases in the copyright area, if you cannot do a case summary only add a case name if you have a valid citation to that case (so someone else can read the case if they are not familar with it).



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