Delaware District Court Distinguishes Posting and Publication for Purposes of the Copyright Act.
By Ian C. Wildgoose Brown – Edited by Stephanie Weiner
Moberg v. 33T LLC, Civil No. 08-625(NLH)(JS) (D. Del. Oct. 6, 2009).
On October 6, the United States Court for the District of Delaware ruled in a case of first impression that a photograph posted to the Internet from a foreign server is not a “United States work” within the meaning of section 411 of the Copyright Act, and thus need not be registered in the U.S. in order to bring suit for infringement. 17 U.S.C § 411(a). Håkan Moberg, a Sweden-based photographer, brought a copyright infringement action against 33T, LLC, a Delaware corporation, and Cedric and Erwan Leygues, France-based website operators, for unauthorized use of photographs he had displayed on a German website in 2004. The court denied the defendants’ motion to dismiss, allowing the photographer to go forward with his suit without having to first register his copyright in the United States.
Loeb & Loeb LLP provides an overview of the case. Ex©lusive Rights suggests that the outcome was largely inconsequential. But CyberLaw Currents sees the case as significant for international copyright law. (more…)