Legal Relations Of The Copyright Act

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Glynn claims that he is joint owner of the copyright to RUST under the Copyright Act and seeks a declaratory judgment under the Declaratory Judgment Act. Facepunch argues that Glynn has pled that claim with insufficient particularity. Facepunch also argues that the first contract between Facepunch and Glynn shows that Facepunch did not intend for Glynn to have any ownership interest in RUST. Under the Declaratory Judgment Act, the court may “declare the rights and other legal relations of any interested party seeking such declaration.” Federal district courts are well-situated to hear disputes where a plaintiff seeks a declaration of copyright ownership pursuant to the Copyright Act. Section 101 of the Copyright Act defines a “joint…show more content…
Where parties have meaningfully collaborated on a work, “it is hard to imagine” that such work is “unaccompanied by the requisite intent.” Facepunch argues that it never intended to enter into joint ownership with Glynn. Both sides agree, however, that Glynn was an independent contractor for Facepunch and never signed any documents altering his copyright interest in any game he produced. Moreover, Glynn alleges that he wrote roughly 75% of RUST’s code, making him the dominant author. Glynn’s complaint sufficiently alleges that he performed a substantial amount of work on RUST and worked closely with other collaborators at Facepunch to create a finished product. Glynn’s contract with Facepunch establishes his monthly stipend, but does not affect his rights as an independent contractor to joint authorship in his work and derivative works. The court will not dismiss Glynn’s claim for declaratory judgment. Glynn argues that Facepunch interfered with his contract or economic advantage by abandoning RUST and replacing it with Facepunch’s failed experimental game. Glynn’s allegations for tortious interference relate to entirely to RUST and have nothing to do with the contract between Facepunch and Glynn. As a result, dismissal of Glynn’s interference claim as it relates to Glynn’s
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