Biz Loses Landmark Copyright Case

March 25, 2013Article
The Hollywood Reporter

Ginsburg said the majority failed to address Congress’ intention “to grant copyright owners the right to control the importation of foreign-made copies of their works” and that an alternative interpretation of the first-sale doctrine would not not bar art museums from lawfully displaying works made in other countries. “Museums can, of course, seek the copyright owner’s permission to display a work,” she wrote.

The justice added, “Kirtsaeng and his supporting amici cite not a single case in which the owner of a consumer good authorized for sale in the United States has been sued for copyright infringement after reselling the item or giving it away as a gift or to charity.” Some attorneys believe that the majority of the Supreme Court came to the right conclusion. “The court’s ruling was grounded not only in the plain language of the firstsale doctrine but in common sense,” said Aaron Moss at Greenberg Glusker.