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Swatch Demands Damages from Bloomberg

MANHATTAN (CN) - The Swatch Group, worldwide maker and distributor of wristwatches, sued Bloomberg LP in Federal Court, claiming the news service secretly recorded a Swatch conference call with securities analysts, then created a transcript and posted it online.

Switzerland-based Swatch, which makes watches and components for Omega, Breguet, Longines, Blancpain, Swatch and others, claims Bloomberg recorded its Feb. 8 conference call - the "earnings call" - with "invited securities analysts."

The conference call was recorded by Chorus Call SA (CCSA), at Swatch's request, according to the complaint.

"At the beginning of the earnings call, which occurred simultaneously with CCSA's transmission and recordation of the call, the participants were informed that the call was being recorded and were instructed not to record the call for publication of broadcast," the complaint states.

Swatch adds: "The Work was made outside the United States, is an original work of authorship, and is copyrightable subject matter under the laws of the United States." Swatch claims it owns the copyright. The call originated from Swatch's Bienne, Switz., headquarters.

Swatch demands statutory damages of $150,000 per violation for copyright infringement. It is represented by Jess Collen of Ossining, N.Y.

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