There has been a lot in the news lately about big businesses suing each other over patents and copyrights. The numbers the plaintiffs are looking for in the cases are sometimes in the billions of dollar range, those are staggering figures for most of us even to imagine. These numbers are sought not only to recover perceived damages, but to discourage competition from creating anything close to being similar versions of successful products. It not only stifles companies’ willingness to develop competitive products but hurts consumers with higher prices because of less market competition. These huge companies, because of their financial clout, have become the ‘Big bad Wolf’ that make people hesitate to challenge them. Most individuals are reluctant to take on big companies in regard to copyright infringement, but one brave soul from South Carolina is sticking up for himself based on a copyright that he feels legally entitles him to a whopping 1.7 billion dollars.
So who is this white knight who leads the charge for individual copyright rights against Giant Corporations that think their huge sums of money entitle them to protections and benefits that are not available to everyone? His name is Roland Chambers and he is claiming that 12 copyrighted songs and 2 pieces of copyrighted cover art were illegally distributed on Apple ITunes without his permission. Apparently the music was first sent to a company in 2001 called CD Baby on a consignment basis. No rights were ever given for resale or transference of the copyright to CD Baby to anyone else. The plaintiff goes on to say to say that in addition to the amount of money that Apple made illegally, the problem has been compounded by the fact that with Apple’s large distribution network that many pirate copies are now being distributed also.
So how will all this play out for Mr. Chambers. No one knows for sure but his copyright seems to be legally valid and that is the most important factor in this case. It shows the value of competent legal counsel guiding your way in the patenting process then standing behind you if your legal patent entitlements are infringed upon. Will Mr. Chambers get 1.7 billion dollars because of this, not likely, but it is pretty likely if his patent is deemed legal he will get a large sum of money. Let this be an example and protect yourself in every way possible with an experienced intellectual property lawyer standing beside you in the copyright process.