By: Joe Mullin | PaidContent.org
A judge has dismissed its lawsuit against the Democratic Underground website, saying that the contract Righthaven struck with Stephens Media, owner of the Las Vegas Review-Journal, doesn’t give it the right to sue anyone. Righthaven has been “disingenuous, if not outright deceitful” in how it described its business dealings with Stephens Media, the judge wrote. It’s a loss that endangers many of the more than 200 copyright lawsuits the Righthaven has filed in the past year.
In his order, U.S. District Judge Roger Hunt accepted in full the argument put forward by Democratic Underground’s lawyers that it’s simply not allowed under copyright law for Stephens Media to transfer only the right to sue, while keeping the many other rights that come with a copyright grant. Righthaven and its owner, Steve Gibson, tried to make the argument that Stephens Media really only had a license to use the material, and that Righthaven did indeed own the entire copyright.