Don’t Akanoc it if you… oh, never mind…

Essex County historic courthouse detailWord is out that the Ninth Circuit has just affirmed the opinion in Akanoc Solutions — which I first wrote about here — for the most part.

Jane Coleman addressed the lower court opinion in her recent update to her secondary liability treatise and Claudia Ray, the head of the Trademark and Unfair Competition Committee of the New York City Bar Association, just sent around the Court of Appeals decision in an email to committee members.  This pithy squib she credits to her evidently very able colleague Josh Simmons:

In Louis Vuitton Malletier v. Akanoc Solutions, Inc., et al., the Ninth Circuit issued a decision last Friday vacating a jury award of $10.5 million in statutory damages for willful contributory trademark infringement of 13 marks (which brought the total award to $31.5 million on the trademark claims plus $1.2 million for the willful infringement of two copyrighted works).  The Ninth Circuit vacated the damage awards because they exceeded the statutory maximums, but affirmed in all other respects and remanded to the district court with instructions to award $10.5 million for contributory trademark infringement and $300K for contributory copyright infringement.

This result comes as no great surprise.  I thought that under the facts here — very specific facts about a very specific level of knowledge on the part of the server company — the case for secondary liability was a strong one.  But I had a lot of trouble with the massive statutory damages award, which in general I have trouble with in terms of what happens to these candy-dispenser laws in the hands of juries.

Or have I mentioned that?

I think the Ninth has probably done the right thing here.  I promise to read the decision in full and to augment, supplement or entirely reverse myself as appropriate.  For now, I’m just reporting the news and pushing the old agenda.

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Author:Ron Coleman

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  1. Adelina Sinohui - September 14, 2011

    “Don’t Akanoc it if you… oh, never mind…” http://t.co/EKepB4c

  2. CopyrightLaw - September 14, 2011

    “Don’t Akanoc it if you… oh, never mind…” http://t.co/EKepB4c

  3. La responsabilità degli ISP. Negli Stati Uniti e nell’UE… « IP in Florence - September 18, 2011

    […] & Marketing Law Blog, ma la sentenza è stata oggetto di molti commenti. Alcuni li trovate qui e […]

  4. Drop That Faux Fendi! Web Host’s Liability for Counterfeiting Retailers Upheld « Entertainment Law and Web 2.0 - September 19, 2011

    […] web host’s liability for hosting a Chinese-based counterfeiting retailer. Akanoc has been embroiled in a legal battle since 2009, when designer Louis Vuitton brought suit after Akanoc ignored numerous take down notices […]

  5. Jared Kalmanosn, Esq - October 12, 2011

    RT @roncoleman: Don't Akanoc it if you… oh, never mind… http://t.co/qM7z2u5Q