Scholastic Beats Photographer’s Copyright Infringement Claims

Written September 6, 2019

The US Court of Appeals for the Second Circuit on August 28, 2019, dismissed a photographer’s copyright infringement allegations against Scholastic Inc., the well-known children’s book and textbook publisher. Yamashita v. Scholastic Inc., 2d Cir., No. 17-1957, 8/28/19.

Michael Yamashita is a professional photographer who authorized stock photography agency Corbis Corp. to license his pictures. Yamashita sued Scholastic, alleging that it exceeded the limits of Corbis’s licenses. The lower court dismissed the complaint because Yamashita didn’t specify the terms of the license or how Scholastic violated them.

The Second Circuit affirmed the dismissal, saying that the allegation were too speculative to support his copyright infringement claims, and that the complaint was merely a “fishing expedition.” 

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