Wednesday, February 16, 2011

9th Circuit en Banc: Preemption of Contracts Involving Ideas, and Judges on YouTube: Gnarly!

The 9th Circuit Court of Appeals has a channel on YouTube. A couple of weeks back, I met Chief Judge Alex Kozinski at a Federal Bar Association cocktail party with the greeting "Hey Judge I saw you on YouTube!" This is the type of greeting that New Yorkers think Californians will enjoy. I survived the greeting to have a good discussion. The Cassirer case, the Ninth Circuit en banc video on YouTube here.

But once again, I am drawn back to YouTube for a wonderful argument on an important case (thank you Anonymous tipster). My initial post on the 9th Circuit's original decision in Montz v. Pilgrim Films here.

I rarely take a position in copyright cases (as opposed to Nazi art looting cases) saying that a case is right or wrong. Sometimes I say that a copyright case is well-reasoned. But Montz v. Pilgrim Films, as you can see from my earlier post here, is a case where I opined that the 9th Circuit was "clearly incorrect".

Now with the argument on YouTube, you too can access the wonderful world of copyright and the cutting-edge issue of preemption. Here, the issue is whether or not a state can regulate contracts governing the buying and selling of ideas. This is big, heady, important stuff and this case is of extraordinary importance. I am happy to see the Ninth Circuit take it en banc.

In Chapter 10 of Copyright Litigation Handbook "Removal from State Court and Preemption" I cover the tension between the Copyright Act and state law.

More Copyright Litigation Blog posts on preemption here.

 Purchase Copyright Litigation Handbook 2010 by Raymond J. Dowd from West here  

1 comment:

AD said...

In your post above, you write that this video is of a "reahearing en banc (before every judge on the court)." As I'm sure you already know, the Ninth Circuit has twenty-six active judges and another twenty who have taken senior status. My understanding is that "en banc" in the Ninth Circuit usually is a limited en banc review panel of a subset of all of the court's judges, while full en banc hearings in that court are pretty rare. The other circuits all have a smaller number of judges, so they are able to conduct truly full en banc hearings as you describe. I believe the Ninth Circuit has adopted a modified procedure, however.