November 16, 2006

On Monday, the U.S. Supreme Court denied author Lewis Perdue's Petition for a Writ of Certiorari for further review of his claims against Dan Brown, the author of "The Da Vinci Code." In his original countersuit, Perdue claims that Brown infringed his copyright, alleging that his earlier work "Daughter of God" was substantially similar to Brown's work, of which over 60 million copies have been printed worldwide. According to the Albuquerque Tribune News Article (link below), "Perdue had alleged that Brown copied the basic premise of "Daughter of God," including notions that history is controlled by victors, not losers, and the importance of the Roman Emperor Constantine in requiring a transition from a female to a male-dominated religion." This lawsuit began when Brown and Random House sought a declaratory judgment in the U.S. District Court for the Southern District of New York in Manhattan that Brown's work did not infringe Perdue's work, and Perdue filed a countersuit alleging infringement and requesting $150 million in damages. In August, 2005, the District Court held that there was no copyright infringement, and in April 2006, the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Second Circuit agreed.

The Albuquerque Tribune News Article: LINK
November 13, 2006 Supreme Court Order List (Denial - p. 11): LINK

1 comments:

Lewis Perdue said...

The Supreme Court didn't address the substance of my case at all -- it's just that they didn't want to deal with a messy inconsistency concerning federal adjudication of copyright infringement.

Thanks to that, justice in this sort of issue still depends on shopping for the right Federal Court to hear the case.

Furthermore, the Supreme Court makes mistakes all the time. Hell, it took them over half a century to correct Plessey v. Ferguson.

One part of me is a little disappointed, but overall I am relieved to have this part of things over.

Not having to pay Random House's $300,000+ legal fee demand was the most important issue and having Seth Mnookin and his Vanity Fair article set straight the Random House spin machine pretty well established the point I had tried to make before RH sued me.

As my appellate attorney Luther Munford just said to me in an email, "I believe the petition makes it clear to anyone who cares about such things that Dan Brown and his wife certainly did copy Daughter of God in a substantial way."

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Mark Reichel
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I am a patent attorney with Reichel IP LLC, where I concentrate my practice on patent drafting and prosecution, trademarks, and general intellectual property matters. I currently focus on the preparation and prosecution of medical device and other life sciences patent applications, and being actively involved in a number of local not-for-profit organizations.

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