In Georgia v. Public.Resource.Org, Inc., 590 U.S. ____ (2020), the U.S. Supreme Court held (5-4) that any works (including non-binding annotations to a State code) authored by or for the State’s legislature in the course of its legislative duties are ineligible for copyright protection.
In Allen v. Cooper, No. 18-877, 589 U.S. ____ (2020), the U.S. Supreme Court affirmed that the Copyright Remedy Clarification Act of 1990, known as CRCA, did not abrogate the sovereign immunity of States because Congress lacked the authority to abrogate sovereign immunity.
In its recent decision in Southern Credentialing Support Services, L.L.C. v. Hammond Surgical Hospital, L.L.C., No. 18-31160, 2020 U.S. App. LEXIS 624 (5th Cir. Jan. 9, 2020), the Fifth Circuit held that a court may not award statutory damages in a copyright infringement matter for post-registration infringement even if the post-registration infringement was different from the pre-registration infringement.
In a recent decision, the Ninth Circuit reversed a district court’s finding, as a matter of law and notwithstanding the jury’s verdict, that a defendant’s copyright infringement was not willful, but affirmed the district court’s refusal to award attorneys’ fees to the prevailing plaintiff (without prejudice to the plaintiff seeking reconsideration of this refusal on remand).
Two recent decisions, one hailing from the Ninth Circuit and the other from the Southern District of New York, deal with the protectability of short phrases in musical compositions.