Good morning everyone. Hope you are all having a good beginning to the week. For this week’s IP news:
Marshmello dodged a copyright suit
US electronic music producer Marshmello dodged a copyright lawsuit accusing him of copying elements in his 2018 hit “Happier”. Indeed, Russian DJ Art accused Marshmello of using part of one of its remix tracks in “Happier”, a collaboration that he developed with Bastille, without permission.
The Russian DJ released “I Lived (Arty Remix)”, a remix of a One Republic song, in 2014. Arty used the original masters of the One Republic song and then added his own elements. Marshmello subsequently used these “Arty elements” in “Happier”, triggering the copyright lawsuit.
The US District Court of California, however, established otherwise. Indeed, according to the Court, Arty’s contract with record label Interscope was “unambiguous” and forfeited any ownership rights he had to the remix.
According to Arty, while the agreement with Interscope forfeited any rights he had to the remix, as a whole, or to the original One Republic masters, this didn’t apply to the elements he added himself. Under this reading of the contract, Arty would have retained IP rights over the elements he added to the song.
But the court rejected this interpretation mainly based on the following provision:
“I acknowledge and agree that the services rendered (or to be rendered) by Remixer hereunder do not entitle Remixer or me to any ownership or financial interest in the underlying musical composition(s) embodied in the Remix Master(s), and I specifically agree that neither Remixer nor I will make any claims to the contrary.”
Hence, DJ Arty has no claim over the musical composition, therefore, he lacks the power to claim copyright infringement in this case.
Disney creates and patents a real lightsaber
Or at least as real as it can be (no, you won’t be able to cut through metal or flesh and bones).
On the 8th of April, Disney Parks chairman Josh D’Amaro ended his presentation by whipping out a never-before-seen retractable lightsaber. Star Wars fans went wild online. This sword device is based on a patent granted in 2018 (https://patents.google.com/patent/US10065127B1/en) for a “Sword device with a retractable, internally illuminated blade.” If you want to see the patent explained, I recommend you take a look at VR developer Ben Ridout (https://twitter.com/benridout/status/1381412831707422721). As you can see, we are evolving from the past lightsaber (plastic retractable cones) to a more evolved version.
According to the patent, the lightsaber’s “blade” consists of two spools of translucent material that lie flat when fully wound, like a tape measure inside its reel. When each ribbon is shot out the end, it curves into a semicircle that forms one half of the blade. They’re permanently mounted to a rounded lightsaber “tip” that also pulls along a string of flexible LEDs that’s mounted on a third motorised spool inside the lightsaber’s frame. The two halves of the blade get zipped together by a “blade form” as they exit the lightsaber, creating a single lightsaber beam.
This is all for today. May the force be with you.
- Publication date
- 27 April 2021
- Executive Agency for Small and Medium-sized Enterprises