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458Sony_Brief - SONY CORPORATION OF AMERICA v UNIVERSAL...

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SONY CORPORATION OF AMERICA v. UNIVERSAL CITY STUDIOS, INC. (1984) The Facts: Sony released the Betamax in 1975, a home videocassette tape recording device similar to the VCR. Universal City Studios brings case against the Sony Corporation of America in 1976 alleging that they were inadvertently infringing upon Universal’s copyrighted material by providing consumers with a device that allowed them to illegally record (also referred to as “time-sharing”) copyrighted television programming. This secondary act of involvement is referred to as contributory infringement. There is no written clause in the Copyright Act that addresses second party liability for copyright infringement committed by a separate part. This differs from the Patent Act, which states that “anyone who ‘actively induces infringement of a patent’” is guilty of infringement (239). The District Court of California ruled that Sony was not guilty of contributory infringement
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  • Fall '08
  • SPARR
  • Supreme Court of the United States, Associate Justice of the Supreme Court of the United States, contributory infringement

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