This Index is an attempt to gather in one place all of the copyright jurisprudence and scholarship produced by the nine current Justices of the United States Supreme Court.

Observations:

  • Only two justices have served on traditionally copyright heavy appeals courts: Justice Sotomayor (on the Second Circuit – the “de facto Copyright Court of the United States” according to the Fifth Circuit), and Justice Kennedy (on the Ninth Circuit – the “Court of Appeals for the Hollywood Circuit” according to Judge Kozinski).
  • Only one justice has served as a federal trial judge: Justice Sotomayor (serving on the bench of the Southern District of New York).
  • One justice has published a law review article on copyright: Justice Breyer (“The Uneasy Case for Copyright: A Study of Copyright in Books, Photocopies, and Computer Programs“, 83 Harvard L. Rev. 281 (1970)).
  • One justice is related to a prominent copyright scholar: Justice Ginsburg (her daughter is Jane Ginsburg, Janklow Professor of Literary and Artistic Property Law and Faculty Director of the Kernochan Center for Law, Media, and the Arts at Columbia Law School).
  • One justice has never served on the federal or state bench prior to her appointment: Justice Kagan
  • Of the 18 Supreme Court copyright-related opinions authored by the current Justices (including dissents and concurrences),
    • Justice Ginsburg has written the most with 7 to her credit
    • Justice Breyer has written the second-most with 4
    • Justices Scalia and Thomas have written 5 of the remaining 7 opinions, and 4 of those are on cases addressing procedural and technical issues in the copyright context (attorneys fees, subject matter jurisdiction, and right to jury trials), while the other is Justice Scalia’s opinion for the unanimous court in Dastar, a Lanham Act case (with a close link to copyright issues)
    • 3 Justices have written no opinions on copyright cases (Roberts, Alito, and Sotomayor), while Justice Kennedy hasn’t authored one since his concurrence in Campbell v. Acuff-Rose
  • Justices Breyer and Ginsburg have either authored or joined opinions on opposing sides of the case in 4 of the last 6 Supreme Court cases on substantive copyright law.
  • Justices Thomas and Ginsburg appeared together on a D.C. Circuit panel to hear an appeal of a denial of copyright registration in Koosh balls.

The Index

John Roberts

Chief Justice, United States Supreme Court (September 29, 2005 Present)

  • Reed Elsevier, Inc. v. Muchnick, 130 S. Ct. 1237, 559 US 154, 176 L. Ed. 2d 18 (2010)
  • Golan v. Holder, 132 S. Ct. 873, 181 L. Ed. 2d 835, 565 US __ (2012)
  • Kirtsaeng v. John Wiley & Sons, Inc., 2013 WL 1104736, 568 US __, 133 S. Ct. 1351 (2013)

Circuit Judge, Circuit Court of Appeals for the D.C. Circuit (June 2, 2003  September 29, 2005)

  • Recording Industry Assoc. of America v. Verizon Internet, 351 F. 3d 1229 (D.C. Cir. 2003)
  • Universal City Studios LLLP v. Peters, 402 F. 3d 1238 (D.C. Cir. 2005) (Opinion)
  • Luck’s Music Library, Inc. v. Gonzales, 407 F. 3d 1262 (D.C. Cir. 2005)

Antonin Scalia

Associate Justice, United States Supreme Court (September 26, 1986  Present)

  • Community for Creative Non-Violence v. Reid, 490 U.S. 730 (1989)
  • Stewart v. Abend, 495 U.S. 207 (1990) (Joining Stevens’ Dissent)
  • Feist Publications, Inc. v. Rural Telephone Service Co., 499 U.S. 340 (1991)
  • Campbell v. Acuff-Rose Music, Inc., 510 U.S. 569 (1994)
  • Fogerty v. Fantasy, Inc., 510 U.S. 517 (1994) (Concurring)
  • Feltner v. Columbia Pictures Television, Inc., 523 U.S. 340 (1998)
  • Quality King Distributors, Inc. v. L’anza Research Int’l, Inc., 523 U.S. 135 (1998)
  • New York Times Co. v. Tasini, 533 U.S. 483 (2001)
  • Eldred v. Ashcroft, 537 U.S. 186 (2003)
  • Dastar Corp. v. Twentieth Century Fox Film Corp., 539 U.S. 23 (2003) (Opinion)
  • Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer Studios Inc. v. Grokster, Ltd., 545 U.S. 913 (2005)
  • Reed Elsevier, Inc. v. Muchnick, 130 S. Ct. 1237, 559 U.S. 154, 176 L. Ed. 2d 18 (2010)
  • Golan v. Holder, 132 S. Ct. 873, 181 L. Ed. 2d 835, 565 U.S. __ (2012)
  • Kirtsaeng v. John Wiley & Sons, Inc., 2013 WL 1104736, 568 U.S. __, 133 S. Ct. 1351 (2013) (Joining Ginsburg’s Dissent, in part)

Circuit Judge, Circuit Court of Appeals for the D.C. Circuit (August 17, 1982  September 26, 1986)

  • Nat. Ass’n of Broadcasters v. Copyright Roy. Trib., 772 F. 2d 922 (D.C. Cir 1985)

Anthony Kennedy

Associate Justice, United States Supreme Court (February 18, 1988  Present)

  • Community for Creative Non-Violence v. Reid, 490 U.S. 730 (1989)
  • Stewart v. Abend, 495 U.S. 207 (1990)
  • Feist Publications, Inc. v. Rural Telephone Service Co., 499 U.S. 340 (1991)
  • Campbell v. Acuff-Rose Music, Inc., 510 U.S. 569 (1994) (Concurring)
  • Fogerty v. Fantasy, Inc., 510 U.S. 517 (1994)
  • Feltner v. Columbia Pictures Television, Inc., 523 U.S. 340 (1998)
  • Quality King Distributors, Inc. v. L’anza Research Int’l, Inc., 523 U.S. 135 (1998)
  • New York Times Co. v. Tasini, 533 U.S. 483 (2001)
  • Eldred v. Ashcroft, 537 U.S. 186 (2003)
  • Dastar Corp. v. Twentieth Century Fox Film Corp., 539 U.S. 23 (2003)
  • Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer Studios Inc. v. Grokster, Ltd., 545 U.S. 913  (2005) (Joining Ginsburg’s Concurrence)
  • Reed Elsevier, Inc. v. Muchnick, 559 U.S. 154  (2010)
  • Golan v. Holder, 132 S. Ct. 873, 181 L. Ed. 2d 835, 565 U.S. __ (2012)
  • Kirtsaeng v. John Wiley & Sons, Inc., 2013 WL 1104736, 568 U.S. __, 133 S. Ct. 1351 (2013) (Joining Ginsburg’s Dissent)

Circuit Judge, Circuit Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit (May 30, 1975  February 18, 1988)

  • U.S. v. Hamilton, 583 F. 2d 448 (9th Cir. 1978) (Opinion)

Clarence Thomas

Associate Justice, United States Supreme Court (October 23, 1991  Present)

  • Campbell v. Acuff-Rose Music, Inc., 510 U.S. 569 (1994)
  • Fogerty v. Fantasy, Inc., 510 U.S. 517 (1994) (Concurring)
  • Feltner v. Columbia Pictures Television, Inc., 523 U.S. 340 (1998) (Opinion)
  • Quality King Distributors, Inc. v. L’anza Research Int’l, Inc., 523 U.S. 135 (1998)
  • New York Times Co. v. Tasini, 533 U.S. 483 (2001)
  • Eldred v. Ashcroft, 537 U.S. 186 (2003)
  • Dastar Corp. v. Twentieth Century Fox Film Corp., 539 U.S. 23 (2003)
  • Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer Studios Inc. v. Grokster, Ltd., 545 U.S. 913 (2005)
  • Reed Elsevier, Inc. v. Muchnick, 559 U.S. 154 (2010)
  • Golan v. Holder, 132 S. Ct. 873, 181 L. Ed. 2d 835, 565 U.S. __ (2012)
  • Kirtsaeng v. John Wiley & Sons, Inc., 2013 WL 1104736, 568 U.S. __, 133 S. Ct. 1351 (2013)

Circuit Judge, Circuit Court of Appeals for the D.C. Circuit (March 12, 1990  October 23, 1991)

  • OddzOn Products, Inc. v. Oman, 924 F. 2d 346 (D.C. Cir. 1991)

Ruth Bader Ginsburg

Associate Justice, United States Supreme Court (August 10, 1993  Present)

  • Campbell v. Acuff-Rose Music, Inc., 510 U.S. 569 (1994)
  • Fogerty v. Fantasy, Inc., 510 U.S. 517 (1994)
  • Feltner v. Columbia Pictures Television, Inc., 523 U.S. 340 (1998)
  • Quality King Distributors, Inc. v. L’anza Research Int’l, Inc., 523 U.S. 135 (1998) (Concurring)
  • New York Times Co. v. Tasini, 533 U.S. 483 (2001) (Opinion)
  • Eldred v. Ashcroft, 537 U.S. 186 (2003) (Opinion)
  • Dastar Corp. v. Twentieth Century Fox Film Corp., 539 U.S. 23 (2003)
  • Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer Studios Inc. v. Grokster, Ltd., 545 U.S. 913 (2005) (Concurring)
  • Reed Elsevier, Inc. v. Muchnick, 559 U.S. 154 (2010) (Concurring)
  • Golan v. Holder, 132 S. Ct. 873, 181 L. Ed. 2d 835, 565 U.S. __ (2012) (Opinion)
  • Kirtsaeng v. John Wiley & Sons, Inc., 2013 WL 1104736, 568 U.S. __, 133 S. Ct. 1351 (2013) (Dissenting)

Circuit Judge, Circuit Court of Appeals for the D.C. Circuit (June 30, 1980  August 10, 1993)

  • Nat. Cable TV Assoc., Inc.  v. Copyright Royalty Trib., 724 F. 2d 176 (D.C. Cir 1983) (Opinion)
  • Cablevision Sys. Dev. Co. v. Motion Picture Ass’n of America, 836 F. 2d 599 (D.C. Cir. 1988)
  • Community for Creative Non-Violence v. Reid, 846 F. 2d 1485 (D.C. Cir. 1988) (Opinion)
  • National Broadcasting Co., Inc. v. Copyright Royalty Trib., 848 F. 2d 1289 (D.C. Cir. 1988)
  • Atari Games Corp. v. Oman, 888 F. 2d 878 (D.C. Cir. 1989) (Opinion)
  • Walt Disney Co. v. Powell, 897 F. 2d 565 (D.C. Cir. 1990)
  • OddzOn Products, Inc. v. Oman, 924 F. 2d 346 (D.C. Cir. 1991) (Opinion)
  • Atari Games Corp. v. Oman, 979 F. 2d 242 (D.C. Cir. 1992) (Opinion)

Stephen Breyer

Associate Justice, United States Supreme Court (August 3, 1994  Present)

  • Fogerty v. Fantasy, Inc., 510 U.S. 517 (1994)
  • Feltner v. Columbia Pictures Television, Inc., 523 U.S. 340 (1998)
  • Quality King Distributors, Inc. v. L’anza Research Int’l, Inc., 523 U.S. 135 (1998)
  • New York Times Co. v. Tasini, 533 U.S. 483 (2001) (Joining Stevens’ Dissent)
  • Eldred v. Ashcroft, 537 U.S. 186 (2003) (Dissenting)
  • Dastar Corp. v. Twentieth Century Fox Film Corp., 539 U.S. 23 (2003)
  • Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer Studios Inc. v. Grokster, Ltd., 545 U.S. 913 (2005) (Concurring)
  • Reed Elsevier, Inc. v. Muchnick, 559 U.S. 154 (2010) (Joining Ginsburg’s Concurrence)
  • Golan v. Holder, 132 S. Ct. 873, 181 L. Ed. 2d 835, 565 U.S. __ (2012) (Dissenting)
  • Kirtsaeng v. John Wiley & Sons, Inc., 2013 WL 1104736, 568 U.S. __, 133 S. Ct. 1351 (2013) (Opinion)

Circuit Judge, Circuit Court of Appeals for the First Circuit (December 10, 1980  August 3, 1994)

  • Rubin v. Boston Magazine Co., 645 F. 2d 80 (1st Cir. 1981)

Samuel Alito

Associate Justice, United States Supreme Court (January 31, 2006 Present)

  • Reed Elsevier, Inc. v. Muchnick, 559 U.S. 154 (2010)
  • Golan v. Holder, 132 S. Ct. 873, 181 L. Ed. 2d 835, 565 U.S. __ (2012) (Joining Breyer’s Dissent)
  • Kirtsaeng v. John Wiley & Sons, Inc., 2013 WL 1104736, 568 U.S. __, 133 S. Ct. 1351 (2013) (Joining Kagan’s Concurrence)

Circuit Judge, Circuit Court of Appeals for the Third Circuit (April 30, 1990 January 31, 2006)

  • Orson, Inc. v. Miramax Film Corp., 189 F. 3d 377 (3rd Cir. 1999)
  • Raquel v. Education Management Corp., 196 F. 3d 171 (3rd Cir. 1999) (Dissenting)
  • Southco, Inc. v. Kanebridge Corp., 258 F. 3d 148 (3rd Cir. 2001) (Opinion)
  • Dam Things From Denmark v. Russ Berrie & Co. Inc., 290 F. 3d 548 (3rd Cir. 2002)
  • Southco, Inc. v. Kanebridge Corp., 390 F. 3d 276 (3rd Cir. 2004) (Opinion)

Sonia Sotomayor

Associate Justice, United States Supreme Court (August 8, 2006 Present)

  • Golan v. Holder, 132 S. Ct. 873, 181 L. Ed. 2d 835, 565 U.S. __ (2012)
  • Kirtsaeng v. John Wiley & Sons, Inc., 2013 WL 1104736, 568 U.S. __, 133 S. Ct. 1351 (2013)

Circuit Judge, Circuit Court of Appeals for the D.C. Circuit (October 7, 1998 August 8, 2006)

  • Matthew Bender & Co., Inc. v. West Pub. Co., 240 F. 3d 116 (2nd Cir. 2001)
  • US v. Broadcast Music, Inc., 426 F. 3d 91 (2nd Cir. 2005)

District Judge, United States District Court for the Southern District of New York (August 12, 1992 October 7, 1998)

  • Favia v. Lyons Partnership, 1996 WL 194306 (S.D.N.Y. 1996)
  • Tasini v. New York Times Co., 972 F. Supp. 804 (S.D.N.Y. 1997)
  • Castle Rock Entertainment v. Carol Pub. Group, 955 F. Supp. 260 (S.D.N.Y. 1997)

Elena Kagan

Associate Justice, United States Supreme Court (August 7, 2010 Present)

  • Kirtsaeng v. John Wiley & Sons, Inc., 2013 WL 1104736, 568 U.S. __, 133 S. Ct. 1351 (2013) (Concurring)

Other Cases

  • Costco Wholesale Corp. v. OMEGA, SA, 131 S. Ct. 565, 562 U.S. __, 178 L. Ed. 2d 470 (2010) (4-4 split; 9th Circuit decision affirmed)
  • Lotus Development Corp. v. Borland Int’l, Inc., 516 U.S. 233 (1996) (4-4 split; 1st Circuit decision affirmed)