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Karish & Bjorgum Wins Summary Judgment on Toy Sculpture Copyright Case

Karish & Bjorgum recently won summary judgment on a copyright case for its client, an importer and seller of toys.  KB’s client had been sued for copyright infringement of sculptural works that are embodied in two expanding toys.  One toy was clearly covered by a now-expired patent. KB argued, among other things, that the toys were largely functional and that, to the extent the sculptures were copyrightable, the protection was very narrow.  The judge agreed, finding the accused toys “extrinsically dissimilar in all the copyrightable elements.”  KB’s client is now free to sell these products.  As it turned out, the plaintiff had filed several cases on these copyrights, and KB’s client was the first to obtain a favorable judgment.