Tresona Multimedia v. Burbank High School, 16-cv-04781 (C.D. Cal. Dec. 22, 2016).
In a case involving high school choir performances of four songs, the Court finds that the music director was protected by "qualified immunity" from the plaintiff's copyright infringement claims. Additionally, the Court found that the plaintiff lacked standing to sue for copyright infringement with respect to three songs; and as to the fourth song at issue, summary judgment was denied due to questions of fact concerning the statute of limitations defense.
As to standing, the plaintiff's rights derived from less than 100% owners of the songs and under 9th Circuit law the plaintiff did not have exclusive rights in the songs and therefore lacked standing. As to the three year statute of limitations, the Court found a question of fact whether the plaintiff should have known of the infringing activity.
Lastly, as to qualified immunity the Court recognized there was no binding 9th Circuit law on the matter (though some other district courts had considered the issue). Deciding that the doctrine applied, the Court found that as a matter of law the music teacher was protected.