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Dismissal for Ohio-Based Client

Dismissal for Ohio-Based Client Thumb

Mr. Buus successfully defended an Ohio-based business sued in California state court for re-publishing raw data originally published in a compilation book. The plaintiff claimed the client re-published the raw data without consent, causing plaintiff to lose money on sales of the book. The suit did not assert claims of copyright infringement undoubtedly because the Copyright Act does not protect a listing of raw data that lacks any sort of creativity or originality. Such raw data is free for the taking, and anyone can use or publish it. Instead, the suit alleged "common law" claims for breach of contract, conversion, and interference with economic advantage. Mr. Buus promptly removed the action to federal court and moved to dismiss the case, both on the ground that the Copyright Act preempted the claims. Shortly after that, the case was dismissed. "Without more, the common law does not provide protection for works that are not protected under the Copyright Act," Mr. Buus commented. "In this case, whether or not the plaintiff had the exclusive right to publish the raw data was a matter of Copyright law only, and since the Copyright law did not grant plaintiff that right, the case was without merit."

May, 2013 | Los Angeles, California