Judge expels Yoko's suit against "Expelled"
JUDGE GIVES TWO THUMBS UP FOR FAIR USE
In a 23-page opinion, a federal judge has denied Yoko Ono et al.'s motion for a preliminary injunction against the producers of "Expelled" for alleged infringement of the copyright of the song "Imagine." We have not yet heard from the state court judge but I expect him to follow suit.
The ruling is hardly surprising -- Yoko et al. had a very weak case. The only thing that I was worried about was the claim that the movie producers discriminated against "Imagine" because they paid licensing fees for other music in the film, but the judge dismissed that claim.
Though this ruling is only on a motion for a preliminary injunction, for all practical purposes it is a final ruling -- all significant issues have been thoroughly addressed and there are no additional facts to discover. Yoko et al. can appeal, but IMO they would be wasting their time -- they lost on all of their claims in the district court. They could still lose an appeal even if they win some of their claims.
The Darwinists' invective against the "Expelled" producers for using the song without permission was incredible -- for example, Josh Rosenau, who is on the staff of the National Center for Science Education, titled a post on his Thoughts from Kansas blog, "Expelled steals from the dead".
My prediction that the judge's opinion would be a 100-page dissertation was not far off the mark -- it was 23 pages (actually only about 22 pages if the heading and signature section are subtracted). That is a lot more than I got in my lawsuit against the "smog impact fee" -- I got no oral hearing and no written opinion, even though my argument against defendant California -- that the state lost its federal-court tax-suit immunity by "leaving the sphere that is exclusively its own" (Parden v. Terminal Railway of the Alabama State Docks Dept.) by basing the fee entirely on the state's special status under federal auto emissions laws and regulations -- was so airtight that the state's attorney did not even attempt to answer it.
Comments about the ruling may be left at the following websites: Panda's Thumb, Wall Street Journal Law Blog. I will add other sites that allow commenting when I find them --
Labels: Yoko Ono lawsuit (new #1)