Wednesday, February 4, 2009

Three more Jenner copyright litigators to DOJ; who will be left to litigate for the labels?

Wow -- a whole troika of top entertainment industry copyright litigators from Jenner & Block is headed to the Obama Justice Department.

Don Verrilli -- who most famously argued and won (9-0) the Grokster case for the music and movie industry plaintiffs -- will be Associate Deputy Attorney General, the Blog of Legal Times reports. Last August, Verrilli -- Co-Chair of Jenner's Appellate and Supreme Court Practice -- argued on behalf of the record label plaintiffs to a Federal District Court in Minnesota that the $222,000 verdict against accused p2p infringer Jammie Thomas should be upheld. The court, however, rejected Verrilli's arguments, ruling that Eighth Circuit precedent barred the "making available" theory on which it had instructed the jury.

Also headed to DOJ is Jenner
partner Brian Hauck, who will be Counsel to the Associate Attorney General. Hauck worked alongside Verrilli on the Grokster appeal. And Jenner associate Ginger Anders will be an assistant to the Solicitor General. Anders has also represented entertainment companies and other major copyright owners in copyright litigation; she worked on an amicus brief in the Cablevision case for a coalition that included the RIAA.

So let's recount: the Obama DOJ will include, in addition to Perrelli, Hauck, and Anders:
  • Tom Perrelli, a top music-industry litigator, also from Jenner
  • David Ogden, whose previous Justice Department experience included defending the constitutionality of the Sonny Bono Copyright Term Extension Act
  • David Kris, a high-ranking Time-Warner attorney
  • Neil MacBride, a top Business Software Alliance anti-piracy attorney
Long ago, I asked when Obama's appointment of copyright-friendly attorneys to his administration would make the copyleft's collective head explode. The time may be drawing near...

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