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Unformatted text preview: 1 of 1 DOCUMENT HARLAN ELLISON, Plaintiff-Appellant, v. STEPHEN ROBERTSON, an individual a/k/a Steven Robertson a/k/a [email protected], Defendant, and AMERICA ONLINE INC., a Corporation, Defendant-Appellee. No. 02-55797 UNITED STATES COURT OF APPEALS FOR THE NINTH CIRCUIT 357 F.3d 1072 ; 2004 U.S. App. LEXIS 2074; 69 U.S.P.Q.2D (BNA) 1616; Copy. L. Rep. (CCH) P28,769 March 6, 2003, Argued and Submitted, Pasadena, California February 10, 2004, Filed PRIOR HISTORY: [**1] Appeal from the United States District Court for the Central District of California. D.C. No. CV-00-04321-FMC. Florence Marie Cooper, District Judge, Presiding. Ellison v. Robertson, 189 F. Supp. 2d 1051, 2002 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 4166 (C.D. Cal., 2002) DISPOSITION: Affirmed in part and reversed in part and remanded. CASE SUMMARY: PROCEDURAL POSTURE: Plaintiff author filed suit against defendants, an internet service provider and others, alleging copyright infringement. The United States District Court for the Central District of California granted the provider's summary judgment motion, finding that the provider qualified for the safe harbor limitation of liability under 17 U.S.C.S. 512(a), and dismissed the action as to the provider. The author appealed. OVERVIEW: The author's copyrighted works were posted to a Usenet newsgroup, which was forwarded and copied throughout the Usenet to servers all over the world, including to those belonging to the Internet service provider. The trial court found that the provider met the threshold eligibility requirements of 17 U.S.C.S. 512(i) for safe harbor limitations from liability under the Online Copyright Infringement Liability Limitation Act, 17 U.S.C.S. 512. On appeal the court disagreed with that determination. The court held that there was a triable issue of material fact regarding the provider's eligibility for the safe harbor limitations. The provider had changed its contact e-mail address for copyright infringement claims without configuring the old e-mail address to forward messages to the new address or return them to senders. Such was sufficient for a reasonable jury to conclude that the provider had not reasonably implemented its policy against repeat infringers, as required under 17 U.S.C.S. 512(i)(1)(A). If a jury on remand found that the provider met the requirements of 512(i), the issue of 17 U.S.C.S. 512(a) eligibility would not need to be reconsidered. OUTCOME: The court affirmed the holdings as to the provider's vicarious and contributory infringement but reversed the application of the safe harbor limitation of liability. The court remanded the action to the trial court for trial on the author's claim of contributory copyright liability, and, if necessary, on the provider's eligibility to assert the safe harbor limitations of liability. Each party was to bear its own costs....
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This note was uploaded on 04/29/2010 for the course ENTR Buisness l taught by Professor Sandhous during the Spring '10 term at Johns Hopkins.
- Spring '10