13 Amici Filed with SCOTUS Supporting Nautilus’ Blackbeard Copyright Lawsuit
A total of thirteen briefs were filed Tuesday with the U.S. Supreme Court supporting Rick Allen and Nautilus Productions in their case against the State of North Carolina, the N.C. Department of Natural & Cultural Resources and the Friends of Queen Anne’s Revenge nonprofit, captioned Allen v. Cooper (No. 18-877).
These briefs were authored or joined by dozens of legal experts and associations, and thousands of corporations, including; The Chamber of Commerce of the United States & The Copyright Alliance, Dow Jones & Company, Inc. (The Wall Street Journal), Oracle America, Inc., Recording Industry Association of America, American Association of Independent Music, and National Music Publishers’ Association, The Intellectual Property Law Association of Chicago, The Association of the Bar of the City of New York, Software & Information Industry Association, Washington Legal Foundation, American Society of Media Photographers, National Press Photographers Association, Public Law Scholars, Ralph Oman (former U.S. Register of Copyrights), Law Professors, and the Constitutional Accountability Center. No briefs were filed in support of the State of North Carolina.
“The Petitioners are gratified to see this broad, distinguished coalition joining voice to support reversal of the 4th Circuit ruling. Together these amici underline the depth and breadth of the concerns that led Congress to enact the Copyright Remedy Clarification Act (CRCA) so that States could properly be held liable for their mounting copyright infringement.”
In 2015, according to the complaint filed in Federal court, North Carolina pirated footage of Blackbeard flagship, the Queen Anne’s Revenge. Then North Carolina passed “Blackbeard’s Law” to justify that piracy. Rick Allen of Nautilus Productions is the victim of that piracy and is taking his case to the Supreme Court of the United States. The issue, whether Congress validly abrogated state sovereign immunity via the Copyright Remedy Clarification Act in providing remedies for authors of original expression whose federal copyrights are infringed by states. North Carolina claims it has sovereign immunity in copyright and therefore is above the law and cannot be sued.
Nautilus Productions LLC is represented by Derek Shaffer and Todd Anten of Quinn Emanuel, Susan Freya Olive and David McKenzie of Olive and Olive, P.A. and Joe Poe of the Poe Law Firm, PLLC.