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Australia The Courts

Australian Federal Court Awards Damages To Artist For False Copyright Claim 77

Posted by Soulskill
from the it's-a-start dept.
New submitter BarryHaworth writes "In a decision handed down earlier this month, the Australian Federal Court awarded damages to Aboriginal artist Richard Bell over a false claim of copyright infringement. The claim related to a take-down notice claiming copyright infringement from film footage used in a trailer for a film being made by the artist. The court declared Mr. Bell the owner of the copyright and awarded him $147,000 in damages for lost sales of paintings and catalogues. At time of writing, YouTube does not appear to have caught up with the decision."
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Australian Federal Court Awards Damages To Artist For False Copyright Claim

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  • by MetalliQaZ (539913) on Friday March 30, 2012 @10:11AM (#39522305)

    ... just one big case would be enough to bring some sanity to our system.

  • by Anonymous Coward on Friday March 30, 2012 @10:31AM (#39522527)

    Is it meaningless? It sets precedence. The next case in that jurisdiction is more likely to go the same way; that seems meaningful to me.

  • by OzPeter (195038) on Friday March 30, 2012 @10:35AM (#39522567)

    And didn't bother having counsel show up.

    And lives on the other side of the world to the court's jurisdiction.

    Hooray for a meaningless judgement.

    Yep .. the respondent didn't show up and also ignored the judges order to basically explain why she held copyright. So it seems that she cried wolf and couldn't back her claims up.
     
    While Bell may find it a bit hard to collect from Tanya Steele, I'd say that she has now lost out on a lot of future work - who'd want to employ someone on a "work for hire" basis if after the fact they are going to dick with you over who owns copyright?
     
    So in a sense it is a meaningless judgement, but I think it will have real world repercussions.

  • by nedlohs (1335013) on Friday March 30, 2012 @10:44AM (#39522677)

    Not showing up is also often an indication you don't care about that court.

    I predict not a cent of the judgement will ever be collected. Of course I could be wrong, but the US doesn't usually give a toss what some lowly foreign court says.

  • by Kneo24 (688412) on Friday March 30, 2012 @10:47AM (#39522727) Homepage

    I believe that the majority of the people you seem to be raging against in your post don't like the record labels for quite a few reasons. The biggest being is that the contracts are largely on the record label's side, and any damages they'd win in any copyright infringement case wouldn't go to the creator, but to the copyright holder.

    I could be going out on a limb here, but I suspect they like rewarding people for their creations, not for their ability to sue anyone and everyone because they can. I'm fairly certain we all have discussed this topic to the point where I don't need to cite relevant articles for this... i.e. suing dead people, grandmother's who don't know how to use a computer, etc...

Whoever dies with the most toys wins.

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