MARTIN v. WALT DISNEY INTERNET GROUP, ESPN, INC.

Full title: SHERRY MARTIN d/b/a SHERRY MARTIN PHOTOGRAPHY Plaintiff, v. WALT DISNEY…

Court: United States District Court, S.D. California

Date published: Jun 30, 2010

Facts

Sherry Martin, a freelance photographer, filed a complaint against Defendants for unauthorized use of her copyrighted photographic images. Sherry Martin, a professional photographer, took hundreds of photographs of Dr. David Martin, who was killed in a shark attack. After Dr. Martin’s death, Defendant Bob Babbitt requested her high-resolution images for a magazine issue. However, the photographer did not authorize the use and was not compensated. In June 2008, Defendants published a high-resolution image of the photograph in Competitor Magazine, with a credit stating “photo by Opix/Sherry Martina.” The plaintiff did not authorize the use and was not compensated for its use. In October 2008, ESPN published her photograph without crediting her. The plaintiff registered her photograph with the US Copyright Office and sent cease and desist letters to Fish and ESPN’s legal department. ESPN admitted to using the image without a license and worked together to distribute her copyrighted photograph without her consent. The plaintiff claims that her racing event photography diminished substantially after the call.

Issue

Decision

Based on the foregoing reasons, the Court GRANTS Defendants’ motion to dismiss.

Plaintiff’s requests under Section 501 of the Copyright Act for statutory damages, enhanced damages, and attorney’s fees are dismissed with prejudice; 2. Plaintiff’s second, third, fourth, and fifth causes of action are dismissed with prejudice; 3. Plaintiff’s sixth cause of action is dismissed without prejudice and with leave to amend; 4. The plaintiff shall file a fourth amended complaint in compliance with this Order on or before. IT IS SO ORDERED.

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