The Supreme Court and the Orange Prince
The Supreme Court heard oral arguments in four cases this week. Deviating from the usual Monday/Tuesday schedule because of the holiday, the Court hears cases on Tuesday and Wednesday.
The most interesting case involves Prince and Andy Warhol. The Justices heard arguments on a Warhol creation known as Orange Prince, one of a set of 16 Prince images he created in 1984 based on a photograph of Prince taken in 1981 by photographer Lynn Goldsmith.
While the key legal issue is whether Warhol’s work was a “transformative fair use,” Nancianne Aydelotte, a New Jersey lawyer, observes that “It’s pretty clear that Warhol used the Goldsmith photograph without crediting her, paying her, or asking her permission”
This will make for very interesting discussions among the Justices on Friday when they have a regular conference day, in which they discuss the cases they’ve heard.
The Court won’t hear any more cases until October 31st.
The Saga of the NFL and Daniel Snyder
The ongoing mess involving Washington Commanders’ owner, Daniel Snyder, is about to heat up.
Snyder, who was present on Thursday for Washington’s rare Thursday Night Football win against Chicago, claims to have “dirt” on other NFL owners that will prevent them from forcing him out as Washington owner.
Snyder has drawn international attention for his misdeeds as the team owner, including sexual harassment of employees and creating and nurturing a deeply toxic culture within the organization. He is also accused of accounting improprieties and fumbling a new stadium deal for the team, which might be his ultimate undoing.
Michael Epstein, a lawyer who closely follows the world of sports, commented that “The NFL is going to weigh the disruption to the league in forcing Snyder out as an owner with the longer-term benefit of no longer having him in the picture.”
Snyder commented this week that the NFL is run like a Mafia, yet league rules mandate that 24 owners would need to vote Snyder out as an owner. With the next owners’ meeting scheduled for next week, it will be interesting to follow any crumbs the other owners leave for public consumption about Snyder’s potential fate.
What Happened in Allentown
A carbon monoxide leak on Tuesday morning had families in Allentown, Pennsylvania, in a justifiable panic. 32 children and daycare center workers were rushed to the hospital due to the leak. The center had its license suspended the next day.
Jason Matzus, a Pittsburgh lawyer, points out that while the daycare passed their inspection in July, “Suspending thor license pending a full investigation was prudent, given how dangerous and potentially fatal a carbon monoxide leak can be.”
Some of the children remain hospitalized in Allentown and are receiving advanced treatment.
Ye Suspended From Social Media
Ye, formerly known as Kanye West, was suspended from Twitter and Instagram this week following what has been aptly described as an anti-semitic rant.
These leading social media platforms acted quickly to suspend Ye, who also appeared on Fox News with Tucker Carlson last week to explain, among other things, why he recently wore a ‘White Lives Matter’ T-shirt.
David Gelman, a criminal defense lawyer, cautions that:,
“Whenever users are suspended from a social media platform, the company needs to be very sure that there was a terms of service violation. This is especially true when it’s a high-profile user who may consider an action against the platform if they feel they were unfairly removed.”
The Elon Musk Twitter Saga Takes a Friday Turn
Finally, this morning, Twitter escalated their potential court battle with Elon Musk by revealing that Musk in being investigated by federal authorities for his actions in his deal to buy Twitter.
“Potential,” because Musk had been granted an extension until the end of the month to secure his finances for the deal after backing out of backing out of the deal last week.
As hard as that last sentence was to follow, so are the weekly machinations in this case. In their Thursday court filing, the news of which broke overnight, Twitter doesn’t specify the alleged subject matter of the Musk investigation. That Twitter would make such an allegation without proof in a court filing seems unlikely, but this case never fails to surprise.
John Lawlor, a South Florida lawyer, reminds us that “The Twitter legal saga isn’t going to unfold quickly or easily. There is so much at stake financially, with the ultimate prize control of the direction of the world’s most influential social platform.”
What Twitter will look like if Musk actually acquires it is a question I tried to tackle earlier this week. While it’s all speculation today, Twitter could look and feel very different if Musk ever owns it.
That’s it for this week. Have a great week ahead
About Aron Solomon
A Pulitzer Prize-nominated writer, Aron Solomon, JD, is the Chief Legal Analyst for Esquire Digital and 24-7 Abogados. He has taught entrepreneurship at McGill University and the University of Pennsylvania, and was elected to Fastcase 50, recognizing the top 50 legal innovators in the world. Aron has been featured in Forbes, CBS News, CNBC, USA Today, ESPN, TechCrunch, The Hill, BuzzFeed, Fortune, Venture Beat, The Independent, Fortune China, Yahoo!, ABA Journal, Law.com, The Boston Globe, NewsBreak, and many other leading publications.