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Old November 19 2010, 06:39 PM   #16
CaptainCanada
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Re: Superman Lawsuit Restarts

Captain Craig wrote: View Post
I'm so sick of this bullshit.
Those damn heirs have been paid 2-3 times now for different things. I mean my god how many different ways can a judge look at this before even the courts say ENOUGH.

I get it, the creators got what we see as pennies now but at the time it was very fair and standard practice. Warners paid them in the what, 60s and then 70's, with some very real money(again for the time).

I see no reason these heirs deserve any more money. PERIOD.
Whether they were sufficiently paid in the 1930s is completely irrelevant to this case. Even if they'd been given millions, they would still have a right to the copyright under legislation passed in the 1990s.

When Superman was created, the copyright was good for 56 years. Congress has extended that twice, in the 1970s and the 1990s, and in both cases they provided that in instances where the copyright was sold, it would revert back to its original owners, since the people who bought it had only paid for the right to own it for 56 years. Thus allowing the originators to be paid for the extended span of whatever it was they created.

DC/Warners got their 56 years, and since 1994 they've continued to hold the copyright under the extension. If it hadn't been extended, it would be public domain, so DC/Warners doesn't have a leg to stand on. The copyright, by act of Congress, reverts to the Siegels (and, after 2013, to the Schuesters as well).
Hound of UIster wrote: View Post
What National did was peanuts compared to the fraud that Stan Lee pulled on Kirby and Ditko, conning them out of possibly millions or billions worth of art and intellectual property and actual creators credit.

Jack Kirby is current dead, Ditko is so poor that has been reduced to using the original pages of his comics to line his windows and Stan Lee is living the high life. But since Stan is "the Man", nobody is going to speak out for Kirby and Ditko.
Lee wasn't Marvel's publisher, that was Martin Goodman. And Lee doesn't own any of those characters anymore than Kirby or Ditko do; he just has a better contract.

Moreover, Ditko, Objectivist that he is, doesn't believe he is due ownership of anything.
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Old November 19 2010, 06:43 PM   #17
timelord1010
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Re: Superman Lawsuit Restarts

Timby wrote: View Post
Captain Craig wrote: View Post
It's that this is the third or fourth lawsuit on Supes. A very bad precedent is being set. I don't want to be seeing this crap with other characters in the decades to come by other heirs claiming a sob story.
Do you even understand what the estates have sued for?

The litigation between WB / DC Comics and the estates of Joe Shuster and Jerry Siegel is with regard to the termination of copyright filed by them about a decade ago. If the court rules that the termination was valid (and copyright termination is a perfectly legal action under to the Copyright Act), and that the termination extends to derivative works, such as film, animation, etc., then Warner Bros. and DC would lose all rights to Superman and have to write an enormous check to the families for past-due royalties dating back to 1999 (when the termination was filed). It's not "another lawsuit," it's the same thing that's been going on for ages.

The other half of the coin is a lawsuit filed by Warner Bros. against their attorney, while claiming that he has a personal interest in his clients' victory. The attorney has counter-sued under California's anti-SLAPP statute. If he proves that the Warner lawsuit arises out of activities that fall under anti-SLAPP protection (essentially, that it's a malicious lawsuit), which is a pretty low burden of proof, then Warner Bros. will have to show that there is a reasonable probability that it will win on the merits of the overall case -- essentially meaning that the studio would have to put its entire Superman case on display, and then allow the opposition to respond. The judge could then throw WB's entire case out right then and there.

It's a bit more complicated than RARGH GREEDY HEIRS RARGH.
It might not be greedy heirs but it is a greedy attorney who going by what WB is saying talked the heirs into backing out of agreements they had with WB. A court needs to set a final amount that WB has to pay that will give them complete control over the Superman character and end this once and for all.
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Old November 19 2010, 06:47 PM   #18
Timby
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Re: Superman Lawsuit Restarts

timelord1010 wrote: View Post
It might not be greedy heirs but it is a greedy attorney who going by what WB is saying talked the heirs into backing out of agreements they had with WB.
Warner Bros. claims that's what happened, while Toberoff counter-sued under the anti-SLAPP statute (a SLAPP is "Strategic Lawsuit Against Public Participation;" essentially, Toberoff counter-sued on the grounds that Warner Bros. only sued him to get him off the case) and has denied the claims. Keep in mind that Warner Bros. only sued Toberoff after it retained attorney -- and renowned courtroom bulldog -- Daniel Petrocelli in the matter earlier this year, after preliminary hearings about the copyright terminations were not going in WB's favor.

There are a lot of sides to this issue.
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Old November 19 2010, 06:50 PM   #19
CaptainCanada
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Re: Superman Lawsuit Restarts

timelord1010 wrote: View Post
It might not be greedy heirs but it is a greedy attorney who going by what WB is saying talked the heirs into backing out of agreements they had with WB.
The WB being so trustworthy in matters like this.
A court needs to set a final amount that WB has to pay that will give them complete control over the Superman character and end this once and for all.
That isn't within the power of the court. Under copyright law, the Siegels (and Schuesters) are entitled to copyright reversion; any resale or whatever of the copyright back to WB/DC is a matter between those two parties following completion of the reversion.
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Old November 19 2010, 06:56 PM   #20
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Re: Superman Lawsuit Restarts

Timby wrote: View Post
Keep in mind that Warner Bros. only sued Toberoff after it retained attorney -- and renowned courtroom bulldog -- Daniel Petrocelli
Did he ever get that bloody house built, then?
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Old November 19 2010, 07:16 PM   #21
Captain Craig
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Re: Superman Lawsuit Restarts

Timby wrote: View Post
Captain Craig wrote: View Post
It's that this is the third or fourth lawsuit on Supes. A very bad precedent is being set. I don't want to be seeing this crap with other characters in the decades to come by other heirs claiming a sob story.
Do you even understand what the estates have sued for?
Yes.
They shouldn't have sued in 1999, hell that was 11 yrs ago. Really, this is still going on?
The lawyer situation is retalitory and juvenile.

I want the courts to lock this down and settle this pissing match for good.
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Old November 19 2010, 08:04 PM   #22
Admiral Buzzkill
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Re: Superman Lawsuit Restarts

Captain Craig wrote: View Post
Not embarrassed. I'm not the one coming off as an ass putting [sic] out there like a grammar nazi.
Spelling and grammar are different things.

I confess to a deep and abiding disinterest in whether or not people think I'm an ass.

CaptainCanada wrote: View Post
A court needs to set a final amount that WB has to pay that will give them complete control over the Superman character and end this once and for all.
That isn't within the power of the court.
This is the crux of what people so often seem not to understand about the whole idea of a system of courts and law. All laws are limited in their application, and the outcome of a given proceeding is, by it's nature, fundamentally unknowable beforehand (though smart money will bet on precedent).

If the law were absolute and the testimony of witnesses universally reliable we wouldn't need courts - just cops.

Captain Craig wrote: View Post
I want the courts to lock this down and settle this pissing match for good.
Read Captain Canada's post again - the entire thing.
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Old November 19 2010, 08:08 PM   #23
Stone_Cold_Sisko
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Re: Superman Lawsuit Restarts

I don't get why this is all so complicated.

Warners' copyright is supposed to last X number of years, after which it reverts to the estate. Congress extended the value of X twice in the past.

Hence, when those X years is reached, it all goes back to the estate.

What am I missing here? Have we reached X years?

If no, sorry estate, you have to wait longer
if yes, sorry Warners, your rental of the Superman property has run out.
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Old November 19 2010, 08:28 PM   #24
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Re: Superman Lawsuit Restarts

It's complicated because there are lawyers involved.
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Old November 19 2010, 08:28 PM   #25
Admiral Buzzkill
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Re: Superman Lawsuit Restarts

There are lawyers involved because it's complicated.
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