FASHION LAW: ADOBE CATCHES FOREVER 21 STEALING
Notorious fast-fashion retailer and questionable vendor of ethical practices, Forever 21 has gotten itself into boiling water over the unauthorized and illegal use of creative design programs. The class action suit was filed on Jan. 28th, 2015 in the Northern District of California by industry giants: Adobe Systems Incorporated (DE), Autodesk, INC. (DE), and Corel Corporation (Canada). The three corporations discovered that Forever 21 was using pirated copies of their products, and “continued their infringing activities even after being contacted by Adobe regarding the infringement.”
The plaintiffs claim that Forever 21 violated intellectual property laws on copyrighted material (see: Title 17, “Copyright Act”). Although it is unknown how these companies caught Forever 21’s piracy, the plaintiffs recount 63 different instances where the defendant infringed on programs that included almost all Adobe’s Creative Cloud products (Illustrator, Photoshop, Acrobat, Dreamweaver), Autodesk software (Factory Design Suite, Sketchbook Pro), and Corel programs (WinZip, PaintShopPro). It is known, however, that after Adobe started to integrate their programs into Cloud systems, a scramble for independent pirated copies shot up and prompted Adobe to encourage employees to show infringing companies.
The lawsuit states that even after notice, Forever 21 continues “repeated and irreparable injury” of which the plaintiffs are demanding an unspecified dollar amount for statuary and actual damages as well as any profit that the defendant may have gained and any activity caused by the infringement activities and legal fees. The damages alone would take some maneuvering to calculate:
“It would be difficult to ascertain the amount of money damages that would afford Plaintiffs adequate relief at law for Defendants’ continuing acts and omissions complained of herein, and a multiplicity of judicial proceedings would be required.”
Adobe, Autodesk and Corel are requesting a jury trial.by