Google in Fray Over Righthaven Copyrights

January 16, 2012

January 16, 2012 (Mountain View, CA) – Andrew Bridges, Partner in the IP & Technology Litigation Group of Fenwick & West, was highlighted for his involvement with preparing an amicus brief in the highly publicized Righthaven litigation in the Courthouse News article "Google in Fray Over Righthaven Copyrights."

The article concerns Righthaven, who has filed over 200 lawsuits against bloggers and websites that Righthaven claims to have violated its copyrights to multiple articles and photos. Google has now become involved in a matter concerning Righthaven and an Oregon nonprofit in the Ninth Circuit, calling the Righthaven case, "a misguided construction of the Fair Use Doctrine." Fenwick & West has successfully represented other defendants sued by Righthaven, working with the Electronic Frontier Foundation (EFF) to secure dismissal of the case filed against the Democratic Underground.

Andrew Bridges of Fenwick & West filed an amicus brief on behalf of Google, stating that the company "has a strong interest in the careful and considered application of the fair-use doctrine."

The brief went on to say, "Google urges the court to reject Righthaven's false assertion that there is 'almost a per se pronouncement' in the Ninth Circuit precluding the application of the fair use doctrine when an entire work has been copied. Indeed, adoption of any such per se rule would wreak havoc on businesses like Google, whose ability to offer innovative and useful services to the public depends on the adaptability of the fair use doctrine."

"Indeed, with modern technology developing at an unprecedented pace, the need for flexibility in the fair use analysis is more crucial than ever. Righthaven ignores the fact that the Supreme Court, this court, and numerous courts outside this Circuit have expressly found fair use in cases involving complete copies of a plaintiff's work," Bridges wrote.