Opening Shots Fired In Pirate Shipwreck Copyright Fight

Law360 (August 6, 2019, 6:28 PM EDT) -- A filmmaker urged the U.S. Supreme Court on Tuesday to rule that he can sue North Carolina for using his footage of a famous pirate shipwreck, warning that artists are “helpless as states continue to trample federal copyrights.”

In the opening brief of a case the justices agreed to tackle in June, Frederick Allen urged the court to revive the Copyright Remedy Clarification Act, a 1990 statute that aimed to allow copyright owners to sue states for infringement.

A lower court ruled last year the provision violated the Eleventh Amendment by improperly revoking state sovereign immunity, but Allen said the Constitution’s...

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