Wisconsin Lawyers Blog

Wisconsin Lawyers Sharing their Expertise

Author Archive

Copyright Termination Rights Can Affect Estate Planning

By Elizabeth T Russell • Feb 11th, 2012 • Category: Intellectual Property Law, Newest Post

I recently developed a short presentation for estate planners and copyright owners, describing the effect that copyright termination rights can have on a copyright owner’s estate plan.
Never heard of copyright termination rights? Here’s the digest version. Someone who transfers a copyright during life can later un-do the transfer and get the copyright [...]

Protecting Trademarks from the .xxx Domain

By Elizabeth T Russell • Sep 26th, 2011 • Category: Business Law, Intellectual Property Law, Newest Post

The owners of trademark registrations issued before September 1, 2011 have a short window of time within which to block others from registering their trademarks as .xxx domains.
ICANN (the Internet Corporation for Assigned Names and Numbers) is the nonprofit organization charged with coordinating the internet’s naming system. As [...]

Wisconsin Adopts “Single-Publication Rule” For Internet Defamation

By Elizabeth T Russell • Jan 28th, 2010 • Category: Newest Post, Sports & Entertainment Law

On January 27, 2010 the Wisconsin Court of Appeals adopted the “single publication rule” for defamation cases. Bottom line: once defamatory material is published online, subsequent “hits” or visits to that material do not constitute re-publication and the statute of limitations does not renew. Wisconsin courts had not previously addressed this issue.
Bob Uecker is [...]

Google Book Settlement Deadline Extended

By Elizabeth T Russell • Apr 29th, 2009 • Category: Newest Post, Sports & Entertainment Law

Authors and publishers now have until September 4, 2009 to decide whether to stay in or opt out of the class action lawsuit settlement involving Google’s Book Search service. The previous deadline had been May 5.
CNET NEWS reports that Judge Denny Chin of the U.S. District Court for the Southern District of New York issued [...]

Copyright: Consultant Training Materials

By Elizabeth T Russell • Mar 24th, 2009 • Category: Intellectual Property Law, Newest Post

Situation Management Systems, Inc. v. ASP Consulting LLC was decided by the First Circuit Court of Appeals on March 19, 2009. The decision has implications far beyond the dispute of the parties; it affects the copyright expectations of the more than $100 billion management training industry in the United States. Bottom line: this decision supports [...]

Advise Authors and Publishers About Google Book Settlement

By Elizabeth T Russell • Mar 12th, 2009 • Category: Newest Post, Sports & Entertainment Law

If you counsel a book author, book publisher or any other person who owns a copyright in a “Book” or an “Insert,” a class action settlement regarding Google’s practice of scanning and displaying in-copyright works might affect your client’s rights.
If you haven’t heard about the Google Book Settlement, visit the settlement website and get up to speed. Do [...]

Libel Actions in Wisconsin: Notice Required

By Elizabeth T Russell • Jan 27th, 2009 • Category: Intellectual Property Law, Newest Post

The Wisconsin Court of Appeals - District I -  has decided a matter involving the notice one must supply prior to bringing a claim for the publication of libelous matter in a newspaper, magazine or periodical. (DeBraska v. Quad Graphics, Inc., et al, January 21, 2009, recommended for publication).
WIS. STAT. § 895.05(2) contains five requirements for valid [...]

Benefits to Business of .tel (Trademark Owners Act By Feb. 2)

By Elizabeth T Russell • Jan 14th, 2009 • Category: Business Law, Newest Post

A new top level domain is currently being made available: . tel

Unlike other top level domains, which simply direct users to websites that may be hosted anywhere in the world, .tel will store the owner’s contact information directly on the associated DNS (domain name server) — and will return that contact information when a user [...]

Prisoner Can’t Sue US for Copyright Infringement (Contractors Beware)

By Elizabeth T Russell • Jan 12th, 2009 • Category: Intellectual Property Law, Newest Post

Robert W. was an inmate at the United States Prison Leavenworth. While there, he was assigned to work for Federal Prison Industries, Inc. (FPI), a US government-owned corporation that produces, sells and distributes various products. In the course of his duties for FPI, and using government-furnished computers, Robert W. developed and produced desk-blotter calendars for [...]

Copyrighting The Floor Plan: Architectural Works

By Elizabeth T Russell • Jan 3rd, 2009 • Category: Intellectual Property Law, Newest Post

Although copyright protects architectural work, protection does not extend to the “individual standard features” of such work such as common windows, doors and other “staple” building components.
US Copyright Law defines an “architectural work” as: the design of a building as embodied in any tangible medium of expression, including a building, architectural plans or drawings. The
work [...]