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Righthaven Defeated on Fair-Use Grounds

LAS VEGAS (CN) - An Oregon nonprofit did not infringe on the Las Vegas Review-Journal's copyright when it posted a story on its website with credit to the newspaper, a federal judge ruled. It's the second fair-use defeat for the newspaper's copyright enforcer, Righthaven, an avid litigator.

Righthaven sued the Center for Intercultural Organizing in August 2010 - one of more than 200 copyright lawsuits Righthaven filed in the past year. Another Nevada federal judge dismissed a similar complaint last year, on fair use grounds.

"All the defendants have done is pull an article off of a website," U.S. District Judge James Mahan wrote in dismissing the complaint on grounds fair use.

Mahan said the lawsuit should be dismissed because the nonprofit used the materials in an educational capacity, and did not use the story to raise money.

Mahan also said his court does not have jurisdiction over the nonprofit because it has "never done business in Nevada," nor did it "have any contacts in Nevada."

At the center of the lawsuit was a Review-Journal story about police and immigrant relations. The Oregon nonprofit posted the article on its website, with credit to the newspaper.

The Center for Intercultural Organizing describes itself as a grassroots "membership organization working to build a multi-racial, multicultural movement for immigrant and refugee rights."

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