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Attorney Steve® Copyright Infringement Essentials - Fair Use Defense
In the Mattel Barbie photo infringement case, the issue of fair use defense was a major factor in the trial. Mattel sued Walking Mountain Productions, an independent production company, for copyright infringement. The basis of the claim was that Defendant had used images of Barbie dolls in photos they produced without the permission of Mattel.
At the trial, Walking Mountain argued that their use of the images was protected under the fair use doctrine. The doctrine of fair use is a defense to copyright infringement that allows the limited use of copyrighted material without the permission of the copyright holder.
The doctrine states that certain uses of copyrighted material may be allowed without the permission of the copyright holder if the use is for a specific purpose or falls into certain categories of use. In the case of Walking Mountain Productions, they argued that their use of the images was for the purpose of parody and satire, which falls under the fair use doctrine. In the end, the court agreed with Walking Mountain, ruling that their use of the images was a protected form of fair use. This case serves as an example of how the fair use doctrine can be used to protect artists and other creators from copyright infringement.
It also serves as a reminder that artists need to be aware of their rights when it comes to copyright law and the fair use doctrine. Artists should always seek legal advice if they are unsure whether their use of copyrighted material is protected by the fair use doctrine.