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Just In Time for Christmas: Judge Issues Ruling in Christmas Carol Copyright Case

OK, OK, so “Santa Claus is Coming to Town” technically probably doesn’t count as a “Christmas carol,” but considering it one made for a nice, alliterative ending to the headline for this post, so I couldn’t resist.

As I perused the news sites for the latest news on copyright lawsuits, I couldn’t pass this one by without giving it a look: “Judge Says ‘Santa Claus is Coming to Town’ Copyright Suit Came to Wrong Town.” If you’re like me, you simply can’t read a headline like that without wanting to know more.

Imagine my disappointment when I found that the headline really just summarized the news in pretty straightforward fashion: District Judge Kenneth Marra, a federal judge in West Palm Beach, Florida, ruled last week that a lawsuit in which the heirs to the “Santa Claus is Coming to Town” copyright was filed in the incorrect jurisdiction.

“The activities of the affiliated entities that plaintiffs have uncovered are either unrelated to defendant, do not take place in Florida or fall well short of the level of activity required to establish general personal jurisdiction,” Marra wrote.

Happily, as it turns out, the case involves more than an opportunity for bloggers to write clever headlines; it actually covers some interesting and controversial aspects of copyright, as well. Read more about it on law.com.