TEAM MASH-UP answers DR. SEUSS’s brief appealing judge’s FAIR USE ruling…

When I blog about Seuss, I start off with a rhyme. But I think I’ll try something different this time. (Darn it…I can’t!)

Appeal! Appeal! Lately, the Star Trek fan community has been seeing more than its share of appeals. Anas Abdin is appealing the recent dismissal of his lawsuit against CBS for allegedly stealing his “Tardigrades” game idea. And Nick Rekieta reports (at the 8:40 mark of this video) that he was told that Vic Mignogna will appeal all of the nearly-twenty counts of his lawsuit that were recently dismissed by a judge in Texas.

And of course, back in August, DR. SEUSS ENTERPRISES (DSE) filed an opening brief with the Ninth Circuit Appellate Court in California appealing the dismissal of their their copyright and trademark infringement complaints against COMICMIX, DAVID GERROLD, and TY TEMPLETON.

The latter three had attempted to raise $30,000 via Kickstarter to publish a “mash-up” of Dr. Seuss and Star Trek titled Oh, the Places You’ll Boldly Go! DSE sued in federal court, and after a roller-coaster nearly-two year legal battle, the judge in the case ruled (prior to trial) that the mash-up book did, in fact, qualify for Fair Use protections under the First Amendment and dismissed all causes of action.

DSE was not happy.

After requesting an extension to give them more time to prepare their opening brief (which clocked in at an impressive 81 pages and was very well written), they filed in early August…along with four amicus curiae briefs, which are opinions submitted to the court by non-litigants who, even though they aren’t part of the lawsuit, still have a vested interest in the outcome of the case.

In this instance, DSE got help from two professors from the Berkeley School of Lawthree members of The Copyright Alliancethe Motion Picture Association of America, and The Sesame Workshop (yep, Big Bird is buddies with The Cat in the Hat!). That’s another 140 pages to add to your reading list. They all mostly say the same thing…essentially that the judge got it wrong and here’s why they think so (and why the law backs up their belief).

Fast forward two months, and now its Team Mash-up’s turn to have their say. Let’s take a look at the latest goings-on…

WHAT DOES IT MEAN TO APPEAL?

First, let’s be clear on what an appeal is and is not. It’s not a “do over.” It’s not a new trial. You can’t simply say, “We didn’t like that judge’s verdict so we’re now asking three other judges to come to a different conclusion.”

Instead, if you want to appeal, you have to find some mistake the judge made in applying the law. Hey, judges are human; they can sometimes get things wrong. But it can only be something that involves a legal procedure and not the judge’s final finding of fact. In other words, find a screw up where the judge got the LAW wrong, not the FACTS wrong. It’s a subtle but important difference.

In DSE’s case, their argument is that the judge didn’t properly define and apply the four elements Fair Use and so came to the wrong conclusion. You can read more about their arguments in the second half of this blog.

Now, in general, plaintiff’s appeals for reversals of judgements they don’t like succeed only about 18% of the time. So this is already an uphill battle for DSE. But it was also a strong start for them, especially since they included those four amicus curiae briefs from interested outside parties.

How much difference can amicus curiae briefs make in an appeals case? They can actually carry a lot of weight in a case like this where the outcome could have very broad ramifications. For a court to rely solely on the positions of only the plaintiff and defendant, a very far-reaching decision could be made based on a very narrow argument. So amicus curiae briefs allow for more voices to be heard. This lessens the possibility that a weak attorney on one side or the other could have a huge effect on public policy for years, decades, or even centuries to come.

For example, let’s say that Team Mash-up’s lawyer isn’t very good, and the appeals court rules that DSE can, in fact, own an artistic “style.” Would that then means that artists from DC Comics could sue artists at Marvel Comics (or vice-versa) for copying their “style”? Could Zachary Quinto or Ethan Peck be sued by the estate of Leonard Nimoy for acting too much like the original Spock? A lot more is riding on this case then many people realize…which is one of the reasons I’m covering it.

NOW IT’S TEAM MASH-UP’S TURN AT BAT

Fortunately for Team Mash-up, their attorney appears to be quite good. I say this after having read the 63-page legal appeals brief that answers the 81-page brief from DSE. (Neither brief is particularly “brief,” y’know.)

What made it so good? To understand, one must look at the brief as being essentially two parts. The first part is the “Statement of the Case,” or as I like to call it, “Our story so far…” While everything that’s happened up until this point is a matter of public record, the appeals judges don’t want to review thousands of pages of pleadings and motions and exhibits and depositions and rulings. They’ll read up a bit, of course, but they’d like a brief introduction to the case from the parties themselves.

Of course, as they say, there’s always three versions of a story: one side’s version, the other side’s version, and the truth. DSE did an amazing job of presenting their version of events in a way that painted the defendants in as negative a way as possible. DSE didn’t lie, they simply conveniently left out certain details that could have put a number of statements and actions by the defendants into a more objective perspective. DSE added in adjectives and adverbs that read like the description of nefarious outlaws. And if the plaintiffs can successfully paint the defendants as unsympathetic and irredeemable crooks taking advantage of a poor, unsuspecting multi-million dollar corporation, then the appeal is already half-won.

So the first thing Team Mash-up’s attorney did was to tell the same story with more positive adjectives and adverbs—plus inserting back in a number of important details purposefully left out of DSE’s version…details that paint the same series of events in a much different and more sympathetic light for Team Mash-up. The appellate judges, of course, will realize that the truth is probably somewhere in the middle, but at least there is now a skewed positive narrative to counter the skewed negative narrative. Without that, the judges would rely on only the most damaging version of events up till this point.

In the second part—which takes up nearly three-quarters of the filing—Team Mash-up’s attorney takes up the task of countering DSE’s claims that their book us not Fair Use by proving that it is, in fact, Fair Use. Arguably, Team Mash-up’s guy has the easier job of the two lawyers, as he can start by building on the foundation of what the original judge already said…and he certainly does that. But it’s not a slam dunk, and it’s certainly not a complete strategy—when the other side is trying to prove that the judge screwed up—to simply say, “Yeah, we totally agree with what the judge said in her original ruling.”

For this reason, the filing from Team Mash-up also uses a mix of legal citations of precedent along with some very—dare I say it?—logical conclusions to back up the argument that their book qualifies as a Fair Use work. It’s too long of a “brief” to go point-by-point through everything. But if you want to see for yourself, I invite you to read the brief itself. But here’s just a taste of the approach being taken to persuade the appellate judges…

Star Trek was designed as social commentary for an adult demographic “about the challenges that adults face,” according to Gerrold, one of its original writers. Boldly reflects its mature themes. As Templeton explained, “a Dr. Seuss book is like a children’s book. It’s a very safe, non-threatening environment for somewhat simple ideas that are expected to be presented to a younger reader. And Star Trek is in many ways the opposite. It’s a violent, sexual, sophisticated adult entertainment.”  Star Trek is “high drama, life and death circumstances, things that are often very violent, sometimes very sexy. It’s a sophisticated world of fiction. And to place [Star Trek characters] in the context of [Dr. Seuss] is funny. It’s not where you would expect to see these kind of characters and situations.”

The worst places in Go! are a “not-so-good street,” Bang-Ups, HangUps, a Lurch, a Slump, a “place you could sprain both your elbow and chin,” and The Waiting Place.  Boldly is darker, confronting mortality and violent dangers. Monsters who killed Enterprise crewmembers loom over Kirk on several pages. In a Star Trek in-joke, characters in red uniforms---“redshirts”---are doomed to die. “Because it’s their duty to end up quite dead,” Kirk dispatches two of them toward aliens who killed redshirts in TOS episodes. An illustration foregrounds an assault by dagger and Kirks of increasing age queuing up to a gravestone marked R.I.P., as “deadly years fly.” Klingons, aliens who “poisoned the grain,” taunt and torment Kirk with a cosmic wedgie.  Boldly sends shapes from a Go! layout to outer space, alongside an inapposite floating blue corpse.

The above example comes from the section where Team Mash-up argues that their work is transformative…and it certainly sounds like it! No one would ever describe Dr. Seuss characters as “sexual” or his stories as “violent,” but Star Trek TOS had both of those elements in ample supply. In other sections, Team Mash-up argues just as logically that their book uses no more than is necessary in order to establish a credible link to both of their mash-up sources (Seuss and Star Trek) and also that DSE failed to present realistic evidence of any negative market effect resulting from the mash-up book.

TEAM MASH-UP EXPANDS THE “TEAM

DSE has their friends, and apparently, so does Team Mash-up. As I mentioned above, multiple amicus curiae briefs were submitted in support of DSE’s positions. Now there’s multiple amicus curiae briefs on record in support of Team Mash-up. You can read them here, here, and here. Among the voices speaking up for mash-ups (or at least this mash-up) are more than a dozen legal academics, including professors of First Amendment Law and Intellectual Property Law at prestigious law schools like Harvard, Stanford, Notre Dame, and UC Berkeley (to name but a few). Also chiming in are the Electronic Frontier Foundation (founded in 1990), non-profits Public Knowledge and also the Organization for Transformative Works, a New Your Times bestselling author, and also an Eisner Award winning comic book creator.

In other others, both the Plaintiff and Defendants have some very impressive relief pitchers in their bullpens to help win the game.

SO WHAT HAPPENS NEXT?

Fortunately for all of us who hate to read legal filings, only one more is coming…and that’s a reply by DSE to the brief that Team Mash-up just filed replying to DSE’s first brief (got all that?). In other words, DSE got the first word AND gets the last word. Doesn’t sound fair to me, but oh, well…

DSE asked for and received extra time for its upcoming reply brief, which is due November 25, right before Thanksgiving. After that, it’s probably going to be another 9-12 months until the two attorneys come before the three appellate judges for a hearing (assume sometime around next year’s election). There is no new evidence allowed, and the oral arguments are only about 15 minutes each—mainly the judges asking very tough and pointed questions.

Once the judges hear oral arguments (and they can forgo the hearing entirely if they feel the briefs adequately answer all of their questions), there is no set time limit for the court rendering a verdict. But generally, most cases are decided within 3 months to a year.

So expect a resolution to this whole mess sometime in 2021. But even then, it might not be over. DSE has deep pockets, and if they lose on appeal, they can then request a further review by the entire ninth circuit (all the Federal judges, not just the three who handled the first appeal). And if DSE fails in that, they can always try to appeal further to the Supreme Court (although the high court turns away most of the thousands of cases requesting their review each year).

And even if DSE wins, what do they win? The appeals court could potentially send the case back to the lower court for a “do-over” trial. This time, the appeals judges would tell the original judge not to rule in favor of Fair Use…although a jury might still be asked to do so, and DSE could still lose. Only by then, my 9-year-old son is likely to be in high school!

Or perhaps DSE wins their appeal, and it’s Team Mash-up who then appeals that ruling to the full ninth circuit…or even to the Supreme Court.

In other words, kids, get comfortable. We could easily be here for a few more years before we can finally buy a copy of Oh, the Places You’ll Boldly Go! Or not.

32 thoughts on “TEAM MASH-UP answers DR. SEUSS’s brief appealing judge’s FAIR USE ruling…”

  1. Man, Jonathan, I do love these “he said / she said” write-ups. The Axanar vs CBS /Paramount case was riveting. And this one is no different! I was almost sad when Axanar was settled, except for the obvious, it’s now being made. And hopefully someday, will the mashup be too.

    PS. Thanks for the assistance earlier today with Alec.

    1. You’re welcome. For those of you wondering, David wanted to get the creators of a Trek website in touch with Alec for an interview or feature about Axanar. I provided an e-introdcution. “Fan Film Factor: helping to bring people together since 2016.” 🙂

    1. Actually, no. DSE might be saying that, but Team Mash-up is saying, “We’re not playing with YOUR toys. We’ve brought our own toys. You only think they’re your toys because they look similar, but they are different toys.” And so far, the judge agreed.

  2. Hopefully, the DSE camp will be successful this time, and a new judge will preside over it.

    And if they should win, David Gerrold can finally pay restitution for the copyright infringement that he caused.

      1. Jonathan, are you sure?
        I’m fairly confident that the appeals court can determine whether to remit the matter for rehearing to the same judge, or instead order that the matter be reheard by a new judge.

        Either way, for DSE, the benefit from fighting this is substantial. Let’s see what is left of the defendant in another 3 years, after enormous legal costs.
        Yet one more reason for the award of attorneys fees by right, as in other Western countries.

        1. What happens when the court orders a new trial?

          When the court orders a new trial, the case is sent back to the same judge for retrying. The judge, and sometimes a fresh jury, hear the entire case over again from beginning to end and make a new decision. In the interest of court efficiency, ordering new trials is reserved only for correcting the most egregious mistakes by trial court judges. In most cases, the federal appeals court is able to simply correct the judgment themselves and move the case through to its conclusion.

          Read more: ///law.freeadvice.com/litigation/appeals/appeal_new_trial.htm#ixzz63Kmukxl2
          Under Creative Commons License: Attribution
          Follow us: @FreeAdviceNews on Twitter | freeadvice on Facebook

  3. Sounds like this entire legal process is going to turn into a five year mission – strangely apt.

    “Very sad trial. Probably have very sad end. But at least there is symmetry.”

    Guess what I’m rewatching at the moment…

    P.S. Good luck to all involved with the upcoming Interlude shoot.

    1. Are you predicting a “BOOM” today, or a “BOOM” tomorrow?

      Because there’s ALWAYS a “BOOM” tomorrow.

      Zog.

  4. OFF TOPIC: Man, I bet Vic Mignogna wishes that his fans had crowdfunded THESE lawyers instead of the incompetent boob he ended up with.

      1. Vic Mignogna deserves whatever legal retaliation he has coming to him. I saw the deposition vids and I can honestly say that it was long in coming.

        It would not surprise me if the cast of STC chose to distance themselves from Vic.

        Both Vic and Alec are two sides of the same coin. Their illegal BS certainly tarnished the reputations of both Star Trek and its fan following.

        1. Vic won’t be getting any legal retribution, Blue. He isn’t the one being sued, nor has anyone ever pressed criminal charges against him. He’s simply reached the effective end of his career as he knew it. He might still get some work here and there, but even if he wins on appeal (which is not very likely), few companies are going to choose to hire someone so litigious. Vic sued his former employer. That combined with what came out publicly in the media and from statements and depositions is simply going to make it even less likely that the math works out for a production to hire Vic over a comparable voice actor. He had a good run, though. He’s nearly 60, and he’s still got a very loyal fan following who loves him, despite the allegations. And he’ll always have a very impressive portfolio of both professional work and the fan films and independent films he’s appeared in. Hey, he can always write a blog. 🙂

          I find the whole thing very sad and unfortunate…most significantly because Vic and Michelle Specht made such a cute couple and were a match made in fan films. I always found that really cool. But his betrayal of their relationship so disappointed me that I actually found that (personally) to be the most most disturbing of all of Vic’s alleged acts against women. What happens to Vic from this point on is anyone’s guess, but his good looks won’t last forever, and so his previous high-flying lifestyle is likely in the rearview mirror of his memory from here on in. That said, the same is eventually true for all of us. Some simply fly higher than others and have farther to fall.

          As for Alec, remember that he technically never did anything illegal in regards to Axanar. Illegality requires a verdict of guilt or liability. And honestly, the same is true for Vic. We all like to condemn one or the other or both (probably to make ourselves feel more “noble”…which is effectively b.s. anyway…casting the first stone and all that), but in the end, we need to acknowledge that neither Alec nor Vic was ever convicted of a crime, and therefore, the use of the word “illegal” isn’t factually accurate.

          Also, it should be noted that neither man has tarnished the reputations of Star Trek or its fans to any significant degree. Both men are minor players on the stage of life. Granted, Alec and Vic are more famous than you or I, Blue, for not by that many steps. Fan films are a niche of a niche. And most of the world doesn’t really give a crap about Trekkies and whom we worship or whom we condemn.

  5. I don’t get it.

    CBS sues Alec Peters over claims of copyright infringement, then turns around and blatantly steals Anas Abdin’s video game for its own craptastic knock-off of Star Trek. And yet the judge in the lawsuit against CBS saw no violation despite another ruling in a similar case in which CBS was the plaintiff, clearly establishing precedent.

    I can imagine CBS joinging DSE in suing Team Mash-Up. The company is nothing if not hypocritical.

    1. Well, without starting too much of a controversy here, but Anas Abdin’s claims were always spurious, at best. There’s a reason his lawsuit was dismissed with prejudice. Read the actual ruling, and you’ll see how ridiculous it was to begin with. CBS no more “stole” Adbin’s game than they “stole” the idea for The Big Bang theory from Revenge of the Nerds.

      As for CBS joining DSE; it’s way too late for that. DSE lawsuit came and went and is now being appealed. If CBS wanted to sue Team Mash-up, they’d be welcome to try. But I think now that there’s been a ruling of Fair Use on the books, any legal efforts by CBS would be titling at windmills.

      1. No, if you look at the facts of the case and the evidence presented, Abdin’s argument actually had a great deal of merit. The level of copying was so close that there is no way Alex Klutzman or someone under him didn’t steal the ‘Tardigrades’ game’s content for use in STD. To deny that is akin to denying that water is wet.

        1. Along with problems proving the cause-and-effect timing (the Discovery scripts had been in development before the “game” was teased), and Abdin’s late filing of copyright (after Discovery had already premiered), the judge’s ruling was pretty devastating for Plaintiff.

          She even started out by giving Adbin the benefit of the doubt and assuming, “Okay, so what if CBS did copy your ideas?” (She didn’t actually say it that way exactly.) Even giving Abdin that assumption, the judge still found that he’d completely failed to show that there was substantial similarity between the two works (Tardigrades and Discovery). The characters he was trying to claim ownership of were (and this is a direct quote) “…mostly generalized non-protectable descriptions.” In other words, you can’t just draw a black woman in a blue uniform and say you own the rights to all black women in blue uniforms. Even tardigrades are microorganisms and therefore not copyrightable. You can copyright Mickey Mouse but not all mice. Abdin’s tardigrade was a cute, cuddly teddy bear that you hugged to teleport you. Had Discovery’s tardigrade been cute and cuddly and huggable, then yeah, maybe Adbin could have proven his case. But Discovery’s tardigrade was a violent monster until locked up and drugged, and he/it only transported the whole ship if attached to a machine and essentially tortured. Not enough similarity even if CBS had worked from Abdin’s idea. Like comparing Mickey Mouse to Hanna Barbera’s Jerry of Tom and Jerry…not similar enough to claim infringement beyond that both characters are mice.

          But most damning of all was the judge’s ruling that Abdin’s Tardigrades game had no coherent plot line (which is true, as it was only a brief teaser, not even a full game). Therefore, since the characters and settings weren’t really developed by Abdin, there really wasn’t anything for CBS to steal other than very general concepts of vaguely outlined characters and settings, and copyright protection was never designed to be that restrictive.

          In short, CBS did way more work to develop their settings and characters than Abdin ever did with his…exponentially more. It would be as though someone in 1966 had come up with a comic book idea in 1965 that he never published that had a dashing young rocket captain, a cranky old doctor, a Chinese pilot, and an engineer with a funny accent…and then sued Gene Roddenberry for copyright infringement after Star Trek premiered. TOS was so much more than just that. Kirk wasn’t just a dashing young captain. That kind of general concept had existed in sci-fi and even swashbuckling tales for centuries. Heck, Kirk himself was based on Horatio Hornblower. Cranky old doctors existed before, as well, along with foreign crew members. To infringe, the original source work has to be developed enough to warrant copyright protection. According to the judge, Abdin’s work wasn’t developed nearly enough to prove his case.

          His appeal should be dismissed quickly and easily.

          1. The problem with this argument is that is has no merit. The similarities between Anas Abdin’s work and what STD blatantly stole from it are so obvious even a child could see that there is an obvious cause-and-effect. Abdin was posting images of his work as early as 2014. STD didn’t even go into production until at least two years later. What’s more, the arguments by CBS’ lawyers effectively admitted that the network did, in fact, steal his work, so the ruling indicates nothing more than laziness by a judge who couldn’t be bothered to examine the merits of the case.

            So no, I don’t think the appeal is a doomed as you prefer it to be. It basically depends on whether the appellate court concurs that the judge failed to do her job (which she did).

          2. Let’s say you create a drawing of a blond guy wearing a blue cape. He has no name, no logo on his chest, and no real backstory. Two years later, I create a movie about a blond guy in a blue cape named Zowie Man. He has a big “Z” on this chest. He’s from another dimension and was exiled to earth for crimes against his leader. But his leader was evil and Zowie Man is good. He fights for truth and justice on our world, all the while attracting followers who will serve as his soldiers when he returns to his home dimension to battle the evil overlord there. I make a full season of this show, spending millions.

            While I’m producing the show, you go and copyright your original drawing. Then, after my first season is complete, you sue me saying I infringed on your copyright. Ultimately, the judge says that, even though both characters are blond with blue capes, that’s not enough of a similarity. It’s too broad of a copyright claim.

            But hey, don’t take my word for it. This appeal is doomed to failure because the judge followed the law, not a vague notion that some CBS-haters out there have of what they think is the law. The judge wasn’t “lazy” just because she made a decision you didn’t agree with. Did you actually read the 15-page ruling? Lazy people don’t usually write 15 pages carefully explaining their conclusions.

            Look, it’s obvious that you really want CBS to be found guilty of infringement. Others do, too. But this was a frivolous lawsuit from the day it was filed. And wishing for a ruling of liability just won’t be enough in this case to change the law. And by law, there was insufficient development of the Tardigrades game concept into coherent story elements to justify copyright protections, and beyond that, the similarities were minor and general, and the law doesn’t grant copyright protections that are too broad lest it curtail creativity and strangle the first amendment.

  6. Sorry, but that’s a disingenuous argument as the similarities between Anas Abdin’s work and STD are too great and numerous to dismiss as mere coincidence.

    Anas Abdin had the copyright on his game before STD began production. The timeline of events and the similarities between Anas’ work and what STD used for its Star Trek knock-off are not up for dispute. These are undeniable facts. One would have to be willfully ignorant to claim otherwise, or simply dishonest.

    1. All of those links demonstrate exactly what I’ve been trying to explain, Michael. The similarities are all based solely on superficial appearances and not any “coherent” plot elements. Adbin can no more claim a copyright to a generic black woman or a red-haired female or a gay man than he could claim a copyright to water. It’s simply too general, too broad. The judge discussed this at length. In fact, I recommend that you read her ruling (if you haven’t already) starting on Page 7:

      https://www.scribd.com/document/426717513/Abdin-v-CBS-Broadcasting-Inc-Et-Al-Nysdce-18-07543-0066-0

      The following is an example of just one of her many reasons for ruling as she did:

      The Television Series builds on over five decades of Star Trek movies and television shows to represent Star Fleet adventures in a new era. Characters use similar terminology and technology and wear similar badges. Overarching themes from prior renditions, such as multiculturalism, the importance of loyalty and the struggle to balance reason and emotion, are prevalent here. And the Television Series consistently alludes to characters and events from prior Star Trek shows — for example, there is a reoccurring reference in the show to the “U.S.S.Defiant,” a spaceship from the Star Trek television show, Deep Space Nine, and one episode references the popular Vulcan character Spock. The conflict at the very center of the Television Series — the war between the Federation and Klingons — makes little sense without background knowledge about the Star Trek universe.

      The Videogame lacks this overall feel. The disparate videos and images do not easily evince a single coherent plotline. Nevertheless, there is no suggestion that this story follows a war between dueling world orders or that the characters engage with the themes prevalent in Star Trek. It is at least clear that the Videogame follows Carter, who solves mysteries to uncover information about the universe and fellow characters. And the story also seems to “deal[] with slavery, secrecy[ and] espionage.” This is not enough to conclude that the overall feel of the Videogame is substantially similar to that of the Television Series.

      Also, it sound like you’re not aware of this, Michael, but Abdin’s own lawyer acknowledged that his client had registered a copyright for his work on June 28, 2018, four and a half months AFTER Discovery had concluded its first complete season. So even were Adbin to win (a near impossibility, as I see it), the law states that he wouldn’t be able to seek statutory damages or attorney’s fees. In other words, he’s gonna pour even more money into a case that won’t net him a single penny in compensation.

  7. All of those links demonstrate exactly what I’ve been trying to explain, Michael.

    No, they don’t, and you know that.

    Abdin’s own lawyer acknowledged that his client had registered a copyright for his work on June 28, 2018, four and a half months AFTER Discovery had concluded its first complete season.

    And your evidence of this is…? I’ve provided evidence to support my argument. I’d appreciate it if you’d support yours. As it is, nothing you’ve claimed with regard to Anas Abdin or the lawsuit is at all true.

    1. “I’ve provided evidence to support my argument. I’d appreciate it if you’d support yours.”

      It’s in the judge’s ruling, Michael, restating the history of caee. Read it. Search for “June 28.” I’m not sure how much more proof I can provide beyond an actual judicial ruling from the Second Circuit District Court of the United States of America.

      With all due respect, Michael, I’m not sure your mind is actually set to “receive” on anything I’m saying. You seem to be stuck on “send”…which is fine, but it means that any further blog-sparring in the comments is probably a waste of time. I’m simply trying to explain why this appeal will most likely go down in flames. You’re welcome not to accept that prediction. I was sharing my insights based on the judge’s ruing and the aspects of intellectual properties law that I’ve picked up in the three and a half years I’ve spent buried in analysis of several cases. Now, does that make me an IP lawyer? Of course not. But I have yet to read or hear any IP lawyer chime in on this case and come down on the side of Adbin. If you can find such an attorney or judge, feel free to send me the link. My judicial opinion comes primarily from the Federal judge herself, but here’s an editorial from Plagiarism Today written a year before the ruling explaining why an Abdin victory in this lawsuit was a long shot at best, even back then…

      https://www.plagiarismtoday.com/2018/09/11/understanding-the-star-trek-discovery-plagiarism-allegations/

      1. Plagiarism Today based its article on dishonest rationale, the guy who runs it isn’t even a lawyer and does not understand copyright law, and the judge failed to even look at the facts of the case before making the ruling. That last bit is why Anas Abdin is appealing the case. The judge utterly refused to do her job.

        I don’t accept bogus rationale. The case by the estate of Dr. Seuss has no merit because Team Mash-Up never, at any point, claimed that what they were doing was based on their own work, but only satirizing existing work the owners of which are widely known. They were never attempting to steal anything or pass anyone’s work off as their own.

        By contrast, CBS and Bad Reboot/Secret Hideout clearly, blatantly ripped off the work of an independent video game developer, and have passed it off as their own. That you refuse to accept the obvious is baffling, especially when no reasonable person would deny it, and you don’t strike me as being unreasonable.

Comments are closed.