Minding Your Business

Proskauer’s perspective on developments and trends in commercial litigation.

Category Archives: Media and Entertainment

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Second Circuit Revisits Transformative Use Test in “Fish Sticks n’ Tater Tots” Music Copyright Case

The Second Circuit recently upheld a ruling that streaming giants Apple, Amazon, and Netflix engaged in fair use, in a case concerning the use of plaintiff musicians’ song in a documentary film available for viewing on defendants’ streaming platforms. In doing so, the Court found the eight-second snippet of the song was performed in a … Continue Reading

The “Truth Hurts”: Judge Rules Lizzo is 100% That [Copyright Owner]

Judge Dolly M. Gee of the Central District of California recently awarded singer Lizzo a major victory in a copyright dispute concerning the artist’s hit song “Truth Hurts.” In her ruling, Judge Gee dismissed with prejudice a claim that Lizzo must share copyright ownership of “Truth Hurts” with the plaintiffs in the case, because the … Continue Reading

“Hold Up, Wait A Minute”: D.C. Circuit Rejects Copyright Board’s Categorical Exclusion of Internet Transmissions from Grandfathered Royalty Rates

On August 18, the D.C. Circuit directed the Copyright Royalty Board (“CRB”) to reconsider what royalties are owed to artists by Music Choice for its streaming services, vacating the final determination of the Copyright Royalty Board.  In the Court’s view, the CRB wrongfully excluded internet transmissions from the grandfathered royalty rate paid by some music … Continue Reading

Second Circuit Finds Use of “Who’s on First” Routine Not to Be Fair Use

The U.S. Court of Appeals for the Second Circuit, in a unanimous 3-0 ruling, decided that a Broadway play’s verbatim performance of a full minute from the iconic Abbott and Costello routine, “Who’s on First,” in a scene between an introverted, small-town boy and his demonic sock puppet, was not transformative or otherwise fair use … Continue Reading
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