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Intellectual Property; Copyright

Intellectual Property; Copyright

A song entitled “Nikita” does not infringe the copyright of a song named “Natasha.”

“We agree with the district court that ‘Natasha’ and ‘Nikita’ simply ‘tell different stories,’ Hobbs v. John, No. 12C3117, 2012 WL 5342321, at *7 (N.D. Ill. Oct. 29, 2012), and ‘are separated by much more than “small cosmetic differences,”’ Peters, 692 F.3d at 636 (quoting JCW, 482 F.3d at 916). ‘Natasha’ tells the story of an actual, though brief, romantic encounter between a man from the United Kingdom and a woman from Ukraine. Their tangible relationship is severed because the woman must sail away. In contrast, ‘Nikita’ tells the tale of man who sees and loves a woman from afar.

But that love can never find physical expression because the two are separated by ‘guns and gates.’ We conclude that as a matter of law ‘Natasha’ and
‘Nikita’ are not ‘substantially similar’ because they do not ‘share enough unique features to give rise to a breach of the duty not to copy another’s work.’ Peters, 692 F.3d at 633-34.”


12-3652 Hobbs v. John

Appeal from the United States District Court for the Northern District of Illinois, St. Eve, J., Manion, J.

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