snIP/ITs Insights on Canadian Technology and Intellectual Property Law

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Originality and Cartoon Characters – Supreme Court to Hear Cinar/Robinson Copyright Cases

Posted in Copyright

The Supreme Court recently granted leave to appeal in four copyright cases arising from the decision of the Quebec Court of Appeal in the France Animation v. Robinson, 2011 QCCA 1361 case. Robinson alleged that Cinar’s cartoon Robinson Sucroë was a copy of his own work Robinson Curiosité. The trial judge found infringement and the Court of Appeal upheld the judgment, in part, but reduced the damages award.

The cases canvass many copyright issues including:

  • the application of the standard of originality to partially completed work
  • the test for infringement when there has been substantial alterations and improvements
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