Category Archives: Copyrights

Trademark Owners and Franchisors Beware: in Milano Pizza Ltd. v. 6034799 Canada Inc., Lack of Licensor Control Leads to Invalidation of Trademark

Neon sign of a pizza over a city's view

In its recent Milano Pizza Ltd. v. 6034799 Canada Inc. decision, the Federal Court ordered the expungement of a trademark registration because the plaintiff did not exercise sufficient control over the use of the trademark by its licensees. This decision provides a helpful reminder of the dangers of relying on verbal agreements instead of written trademark licenses, and the need for trademark owners to maintain control over their licensees.

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The Federal Court of Appeal has spoken: actual damage doesn’t need to be proved in order to obtain statutory damages under the Copyright Act

close up of engine

In its February 2022 decision in RallySport Direct LLC, the Federal Court of Appeal (“FCA”) reiterated and confirmed the principle established in the decision of the Ontario Superior Court in Trader. This Court determined that a copyright owner could claim the statutory damages provided in section 38.1 of the Copyright Act (“Act”), even where there was no monetary damage and no loss of business opportunity.

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Lavigne (Valmedia) v. 9061-6632 Québec inc.: Infringement of moral rights will not go unpunished

court house

(French version available at bottom of article)

True to its continental European heritage, Canada has a strong regime for the protection of moral rights. This includes the inalienable right of creators to be associated with their work as its author and to protect its integrity, notwithstanding any assignment of economic rights. These rights have been recognized in Canada under the Copyright Act (the “Act”) since 1931 and have been repeatedly recognized in past decisions of the Supreme Court of Canada1.

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Image Copyright in the Age of Social Media

Social media phone

In an age where online image sharing is more prevalent than ever thanks to the abundance of different social media platforms, the question of who has a right to use what photographs or creative visuals may appear increasingly complicated, but the truth is that similar copyright principles that apply to a physical photograph or artistic image also apply to pictures shared over social media. Continue reading for a discussion of social media platforms’ rights to the images posted by their users and for an explanation of Canadian copyright in images.

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The Winkler v. Hendley Decision and Copyright in Non-Fictional Books

IP Copyrights

The Federal Court recently released its decision in Winkler v. Hendley, 2021 FC 498 [Winkler] in which it found that an author who claims to have published a non-fictional work cannot later claim that the work was in fact fictional in order to get around the principle that facts are not protected by copyright law.

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