September 11 – September 18, 2008 Edition

Court Ruling
Favors JK Rowling
In Infringement Case

NEW YORK, NY/9/9/2008–Author J.K. Rowling said yesterday that she  was "delighted" that legal case against Michigan-based RDR Books has been resolved and that publication of The Harry Potter Lexicon by Steven Vander Ark. U.S. district court judge Robert Patterson ruled that RDR  “failed to establish an affirmative defense of fair use,” and he issued a permanent injunction against the Lexicon. Rowling and Warner Bros. Entertainment charged that publication of the book, based on a web site of the same name run by Vander Ark, infringed on the betselling author’s copyright.

While Rowling said she took no pleasure in bringing the legal action, she was "delighted this issue has been resolved favourably." She said she went to court to help authors everywhere to protect their works. Apparenlty, Ark had lifted "an enormouse amount" of Rowling’s work and added no original content of its own. Other books have been published to offer original insight into the Harry Potter series, but, said Rowling, "this isn’t one of them."

According to Reuters, the judge awarded Rowling $6,750 in damages, or $750 for each of the seven Harry Potter novels mentioned in the Lexicon.   Patterson deliberated the case for more than four months before issuing his ruling.

RDR Books’ legal team issued this statement: “We are encouraged by the fact the Court recognized that as a general matter authors do not have the right to stop the publication of reference guides and companion books about literary works. As for the Lexicon, we are obviously disappointed with the result, and RDR is considering all of its options.”