College Student to get $4 Million in Settlement

Holding cell S-21, by Flickr user Hanumann, licensed by Creative Commons.

Picture this, only smaller.

No one expects to go to a college party and wind up in a DEA holding cell for 4 days. Daniel Chong, a 25 year old college student is filing suit after being taken into custody during a drug raid at a friend’s house in April of 2012. He was taken into custody, but informed no charges against him would be pursued, and to “hang tight”, the officers would be back to get him in a few minutes. The doors to this cell did not open again for four days, and Daniel had no access to any food or water during this time period. When agents finally discovered Daniel still in this holding cell, he was suffering from hallucinations, dehydration, kidney failure, and a perforated esophagus; for which he needed to be hospitalized for five days. Read more

Microsoft Faces Trouble, But Only On the Surface

ugly white plastic window frames, by flickr user Erich Ferdinand, licensed by Creative Commons.

Windows closed? Not quite.

Tech giants Microsoft are in hot water over their new tablet, the Surface RT; namely their financial reporting.  Although technologically impressive and a comparable product to the Apple iPad, Microsoft’s latest offering did not exactly fly off the shelves.  Low sales and failed expectations led Microsoft to write down about $900 million.  The class-action lawsuit claims Microsoft committed fraud by falsely reporting information to their investors.  The earnings report in the fourth financial quarter of 2013 was, in simple terms, not good. Read more

Copyright Case: Who Owns “Happy Birthday”?

Decorative Scales of Justice in the Courtroom

Time to blow out the candles

Thinking of video taping that special someone’s Birthday festivities? Not so fast… You may be documenting an unfolding crime. Unbeknownst to myself and the general public, you could potentially be treading the line of infringing upon United States Copyright Law. As soon as the widely believed “timeless classic”, “Happy Birthday to You” ballad escapes your lips you are leaving yourself susceptible to civil lawsuit by the copyright holder; in this case, Warner/Chappell Music Inc. To prevent one’s self from running afoul of the law one must pay the $1500 licensing fee imposed by Warner/Chappell Music Inc.

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Bieber Fever: Star Named in Copyright Lawsuit

music notes 3 by flickr user emilyamimu, licensed by Creative Commons

You said you would always be mine

Just like the common cold, pretty much everyone has had Bieber fever, but apparently people are immune to the epidemic. Two songwriters, Devin Copeland and Mareio Overton, filed a complaint in U.S. District Court in Virginia against the pop star. Justin Beiber and Usher are facing a $10 million lawsuit for supposedly stealing song “Somebody to Love.” Back in 2009, Copeland and Overton claim that “Somebody To Love” was presented to Usher and Jonetta Patton, Usher’s mother, who also plays the role of his manager from time to time, by music scouts. They state that copy was never returned and that they never heard back from Jonetta or anyone associated with the company. Read more

Achtung Spidey! Broadway Lawsuit Set for Court

Bono as the Fly Cleveland 1992, by Wikimedia user Steve Kalinsky, licensed by Creative Commons

“I have run, I have crawled, I have scaled these city walls…”

Spider-Man has always been much more familiar with spandex suits than lawsuits.  The Broadway play ‘Turn Off the Dark’ is slinging across headlines after the old co-writer and musical director Julie Taymor is suing over copyright infringement.  She is seeking compensation up to $1 million after being terminated after the show suffered from freak injuries and other mishaps.  It was believed that a decision could be reached, however sources claim the final stumbling block was creative control over Marvel’s web-head himself.  U2’s Bono and The Edge, who are the show’s composers, are also set to appear for the court date in New York, officially set for May 28. Read more