Saturday, December 3, 2011
From FindLaw: an interesting development in Chanel v. Does, an infringment case. Chanel had requested a restraining order against websites selling pirated goods; the federal judge has not only granted the order but has ordered domain names of those sites to be turned over to GoDaddy.com and told search engines such as Google and Bing and social media sites like Twitter to unindex them. But as this post by Venkat Balasubramani points out, this case is in the early stages, and both Chanel's request and the judge's order are unusual.
Thursday, December 1, 2011
A Colombian court has finally ended a long legal battle over whether Gabriel Garcia Marquez improperly used another man's story in his famous work Chronicle of a Death Foretold. The court has ruled that "Hundreds of literary, artistic, and cinematographic works have had as their central story facts from real life, which have been adapted to the creator's perspective, without this being an impediment to [the author's right] to claim economic rights over them." Another man, Miguel Reyes Palencia, had claimed that Mr. Garcia Marquez, had based the central figure of the novel on him, and had requested that the court award him royalties and a "co-author" credit. More here from the Guardian. Background here in Spanish.
Monday, November 28, 2011
Harvey Gilmore, Monroe College, has published Has Garcetti Destroyed Academic Freedom? in volume 6 of the University of Massachusettes Roundtable Symposium Law Journal (2011). Here is the abstract.
The case of Garcetti v. Ceballos, decided by the United States Supreme Court in 2006, established that a public employee‟s job related communications are not protected by the First Amendment. The Court also held that an employer has the right to impose disciplinary sanctions against that employee based on those job related communications.
Although the Court specifically did not address how its decision would affect public university professors in the future, Garcetti has already alarmed academicians who believe in the concept of academic freedom.
College professors, especially those who teach in research institutions, are now concerned that the Garcetti decision poses a serious threat to academic freedom. In academia, the perceived threat is that in the future, cases similar to Garcetti will lead to public university professors losing their First Amendment protection, and thus be subject to discipline for their on the job speech.
Download the article from SSRN at the link.