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Duran some interesting arguments with a view to reclaim, but Le Bon et al. come undone in an ordinary world: No Rio-version of US copyright

27 April 2018

In Gloucester Place Music Ltd v Simon Le Bon & Ors, the defendants sought to terminate the assignment to the claimant of US copyright in some of the band’s most famous musical works, by taking advantage of the termination right under s.203 of the US Copyright Act 1976. The English High Court held that such purported termination was in breach of the various relevant music publishing agreements. The court did not have the benefit of expert evidence on US law, so the dispute focused primarily on contractual interpretation. The relevant agreements contained broad assignment provisions and warranties which the court construed as excluding the defendants from exercising the s.203 right.

This material was first published by Thomson Reuters in the European Intellectual Property Review, as “Duran some interesting arguments with a view to reclaim, but Le Bon et al. come undone in an ordinary world: No Rio-version of US copyright”, (2018) 40 E.I.P.R., Issue 2, by Alex Woolgar and is reproduced by agreement with the Publisher.

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