Saturday, March 13, 2010

Pleading Copyright Claims: Israeli Copyrights, the Berne Convention and Protecting Cracked Software

In Waves Audio Ltd v. Uptime Inc., 2010 WL 308301 (S.D.N.Y. Jan 22, 2010), Judge Naomi Reice Buchwald dealt with an unusual case:  a copyright infringement action that had already spent two years in litigation in New York State Supreme Court.  Plaintiff Waves distributes an audio software and alleged that Uptime Studios used a cracked/pirated copy.  The plaintiffs voluntarily dismissed the state claims and refiled a federal action.   Judge Buchwald considered the issue of whether the plaintiffs should be allowed to amend a FOURTH time in the federal action to allege the copyrights they owned and to add claims to unspecified Israeli copyrights under the Berne Convention.

Judge Buchwald told Waves that a fourth bite at the apple (too many amendments after numerous warnings about the complaint's lack of specificity) was too much and didn't let the plaintiff add the Israeli copyrights.

Lots of litigation recently regarding the Berne Convention see my recent post here.  Software sellers having a nightmare figuring out who owns all that code?  Lots more cases like this to come.

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