John Wiley & Sons v. Williams

Intellectual Property

New York Law Journal

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Judge P. Kevin Castel

Alleging unlawful sharing of its "For Dummies®" books through BitTorrent file-sharing software, publisher John Wiley & Sons asserted claims of copyright and trademark infringement, trademark counterfeiting, and unfair competition. After subpoenaing Internet service providers to identify defendants based on Internet protocol addresses, its amended complaint named six defendants including Williams, Reyes and Carrion. Williams, Reyes and Carrion neither answered Wiley's amended complaint not appeared in its lawsuit. Granting default judgment, the court awarded Wiley $3,000 in statutory damages under 17 USC §504 against each of the three. Wiley had sought $5,000 in damages for each defendants' copyright violation. In finding $3,000 sufficient to compensate Wiley and deter others from future infringement, the court noted that despite the lesser retail price for an individual "For Dummies®" title, unlawful BitTorrrent distribution threatens Wiley's profitability. Finding that Wiley suffered irreparable injury as a result of defendants' unlawful downloads of its copyrighted works, the court enjoined defendants from infringing the copyright of any of Wiley's works having "For Dummies®" in its title.

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