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Led Zeppelin Moves to Dismiss Case, Cites Mary Poppins as Inspiration

Legal counsel for Led Zeppelin urged a Los Angeles federal district court judge to dismiss the current copyright suit against the band over allegations that they stole a riff from the song "Taurus" by Spirit.

Based on what we know now of the suit, it appears that issues of fact could still be fleshed out -- despite our view that reasonable minds might disagree about the "substantial similarity" between "Taurus" and "Stairway to Heaven."

James Cameron Wins Again in Avatar Suit

Director James Cameron won another legal victory in California appeals court recently when a judge affirmed a lower court ruling generally finding that Cameron did not steal ideas from another writer in making his blockbuster hit Avatar.

So far, the courts have been favorable to Mr. Cameron. It is unclear whether or not the complainants plan to appeal this to a higher court, but with a portion of $3 billion at stake, we wouldn't be surprised.

Court Rejects CA's First 'Browsewrap' Case

The California Court of Appeal just adjudicated a browsewrap case on the merits that will now be considered the current benchmark case in the ever murky issue of web-user assent.

Hopefully this case will help to clarify the design elements that must be present for every webpage owner in order to ensure that their users get the notice needed for the applicable Terms of Use.

Self-Driving Cars Will Soon Be Legal in California

It should be no surprise that the California is spearheading that movement to get self-driving cars street legal. After all, Google's self-driving cars are being tested here and they're frequently seen driving themselves on Silicon Valley streets.

But is it as easy as just simply making these things and sticking them on the road? Not quite ... but you already knew that.

Yosemite Will Change Historic Names in Trademark Dispute

When news first came out about Yosemite "losing" its trademark rights to a greedy Madison Ave. company, people predictably started foaming at the mouth. But it turns out that it's a little more nuanced than that.

In the end, it could be a case of "big bad corporate America against Park Service" turned on its head. Welcome to IP meets National Parks.

Blue Moon Is 'Craft Beer' ... Even If the Label Is Just Marketing Puffery

Another trademark violation case has been decided, but this time, it appears to have been in the favor those who make craft beer ... whatever that means.

What does the term "craft beer" mean to you? Does it evoke images of crusty, bearded men over rusty antique vats and hand-stirred mash? If it does, and you go out to buy a case of Blue Moon, the joke's on you.

When it comes to protecting animal rights, People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals doesn't monkey around. Their message is simple: "Animals are not ours to eat, wear, experiment on, or use for entertainment." Oh, and they should have access to intellectual property rights, too. Yep, according to a PETA lawsuit in San Francisco, animals should have the ability to copyright works they create.

In particular, PETA is looking to have a macaque monkey who took a world-famous selfie declared copyright owner of the photos. You remember the photos -- the ones taken when an Indonesian monkey named Naruto grabbed nature photographer David Slater's unattended camera, smiled, and began posing for the camera. Slater threatened to sue Wikipedia when they published the photo and now PETA is suing Slater, arguing that Naruto should be declared the photo's author -- and that PETA should administer the profits from the photo on the monkey's behalf.

If you've gotten sick in the past 30 or so years, odds are that you've been prescribed Cipro, the antibiotic that is one of the most commonly used drugs in the world. From 1987 to 2003, Bayer was the sole producer of Cipro in the United States -- a position which helped it generate billions of dollars in gross sales until its patent expired in 2003.

Part of the reason Bayer was able to maintain such a lucrative position, according to an antitrust class action suit, was because the company paid a manufacturer $398 million to keep a generic version off the market until Bayer's patent expired. The Supreme Court of California reversed a dismissal of that class action on Thursday, reviving the "pay for delay" lawsuit.

Californians who resell art out-of-state will no longer have to pay a statutory royalty to the artist. Under the California Resale Royalty Act, a seller was required pay a five percent royalty to the artist if the seller is a California resident selling out-of-state or if the sale takes place in California. That out-of-state provision is an unconstitutional violation of the Dormant Commerce Clause, the Ninth Circuit, sitting en banc, ruled on Tuesday.

Under the Act, if a San Franciscan auctions off a sculpture by a German artist in New York City, the artist is owed the royalty. Similarly, a royalty is required if a Brazilian businessman buys a photograph by a Chicago artist while passing through LA. Change "San Francisco" to "Paris" or "LA" to "Detroit" and no payment is needed in either scenario.

While the rest of the country is covered in snow, the sun is shining in the Golden State, and legal controversies and news are going at a non-stop pace. There's a lot to talk about, here are some highlights.

Justice Joyce Kennard Retiring

Justice Joyce Kennard, Associate Justice on the California Supreme Court announced that she will retire, effective April 5, 2014, giving Governor Jerry Brown a second chance to fill a seat on the California Supreme Court, reports The Sacramento Bee. The longest-serving justice, aged 72, is seen as "one of the more liberal" Justices, "often siding with the underdog," and "one of the court's most vocal members during oral arguments," reports the Los Angeles Times.