This Week In Intellectual Property, March 2nd

This Week In Intellectual Property, March 2nd

News and Commentary

The band Yeasayer has filed a copyright infringement complaint against The Weekend and Kendrick Lamar over “pray for me,” a track from the Black Panther movie.

In another example of the intersection between antitrust and intellectual property, the First Circuit Court of Appeals found that Sanofi improperly listed the patent for a mechanism in the SoloSTAR insulin pen in the FDA’s Orange Book. Listing in the Orange Book allows a 30-month stay for FDA approval of a rival product. Because the patent at question was for the pen’s mechanism, and not a drug, it was improper to list it in the Orange Book and Sanofi is liable for an antitrust violation for harms to consumers.

After Lizzo sought a declaration that she is the author of “Truth Hurts,” Justin and Jeremiah Raisen have filed a countersuit against her, claiming that the song infringes on a song authored by them called “Healthy.”

In a move to accommodate the ridiculous features of modern copyright law, Epic, makers of the popular game Fortinte, are allowing YouTube game streamers to mute emotes based on various memes and other elements from pop culture, such as Rick Astley’s “Never Gonna Give You Up”, to avoid being hit with a copyright strike when posting their videos online.

Writing about a new report from the Information Technology and Innovation Foundation, Gene Quinn of IPWatchdog writes about how voluntary arrangements among industry stakeholders are necessary to stop the problem of online piracy. Though not the focus of the op-ed or paper, there are relatively few details on the cost of online piracy, particularly as it relates to whether or not it is hampering creativity.

Read a post from Tyler Cowen on Marginal Revolution about the nature of prizes, going into the differences between implicit and explicit prizes.

Here’s an interesting case of innocent infringement: The ex-wife of a bar owner who showed a pay-per-view fight (clear case of infringement) was found to be guilty of willful infringement. Despite the fact that Angie Barraza (minority owner of the business and ex-wife of infringer Scott Alburl) had no knowledge or control over the showing of the fight, as a part-owner of the establishment she is still liable for bar’s willful infringement.

Dean Baker in Truthout makes a great point about the price of drugs in the context of the Coronavirus outbreak: to make them cheaper, it is far more efficient to finance development upfront, something the U.S. and other governments already do.


New Research

A new NBER paper examines growth in the Japanese cotton spinning industry, finding that vertical differentiation (innovation) and horizontal differentiation (diversifying products sold) are complements. Technical expertise gained in the development of new products translated into expanding the number of products offered by firms.

A new study finds that prizes offer significant incentives for innovation, and that prize systems that offer a winner-take-all scheme generates more novel inventions than one that shares the same compensation across the top 10 innovators. Innovation also increases with size of the prize more for teams than individual inventors.

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By |2020-03-02T14:22:10-08:00March 2nd, 2020|Blog, Intellectual Property|