Hon. Stanley F. Birch, Jr. (Ret.)
has served with distinction for over 20 years as a United States Circuit Judge on the Eleventh Circuit Court of Appeals, the busiest federal appellate court in the country. Prior to his appointment to the bench, he was in private practice for more than a decade focusing on copyright law in the entertainment and computer software industries. Judge Birch is considered one of the foremost experts on copyright and intellectual property law and brings to his ADR practice at JAMS his broad legal knowledge, dedication to the rule of the law, and well reasoned and clearly written decisions.
In addition to his judicial opinions, Judge Birch has been an author and speaker on the law of copyright. His book, A Unified Theory of Copyright
, co-authored with the late Professor L. Ray Patterson, was published in 2009. At the invitation of the Copyright Society of the United States, Judge Birch delivered the Thirty-Sixth Annual Donald C. Brace Memorial Lecture at the New York University School of Law in 2006. In 1992, the American Society of Composers, Authors, and Publishers invited Judge Birch to judge, together with Professors Paul Goldstein and Robert D. Derricola, the Forty-First Nathan Burkan Memorial Copyright Competition.
In 2009 Judge Birch, together with fellow Atlantan Ted Turner and esteemed patent lawyer Tony Askew, received the Intellectual Property Legends Award
presented by the Georgia Institute of Technology, the Georgia State University Colleges of Business and Law, the Georgia Research Alliance, and the Intellectual Property Sections of the State Bar of Georgia and the Atlanta Bar Association. The IP Legends Award recognizes individuals who have made significant contributions in the area of intellectual property, both in the business and legal arenas.
ADR Experience and Qualifications
- Authored over 3,000 opinions and participated in over 11,000 decisions
- Heard hundreds of appellate oral arguments
- An active trial and transactional attorney prior to service on the bench, Judge Birch concentrated in the areas of copyright, trademark, and taxation
- Trial work embraced many areas including intellectual property, taxation, torts, contracts, computer software, and entertainment issues
- Transactional experience included trust and estates, professional corporations, licensing, professional sports contract negotiation, and mergers and acquisitions
- Counsel to, and a corporate director of, Original Appalachian Artworks, Inc., the owner and licensor of The Cabbage Patch Kids® copyrights and trademarks. From 1979 to 1988, Judge Birch was active in litigation protecting the many copyrights and trademarks of the company and drafted, negotiated, and enforced the company’s licensing regime throughout the world.
Judge Birch authored opinions on the following copyright and trademark cases for the Eleventh Circuit. Copyright
- Wilchombe v. TeeVee Toons, Inc., 555 F.3d 949 (2009), copyright infringement claim by plaintiff rap musician/producer against the nation’s largest independent record label, over a song entitled “The Weedman”
- Greenberg v. National Geographic Society, 533 F.3d 1244 (2008), copyright infringement claim by freelance photographer against magazine publisher over defendant’s digital reproduction of magazines in new CD-ROM format
- Corwin v. Walt Disney Co., 468 F.3d 1329 (2006), copyright infringement claim by estate heir against theme park owner over alleged theme park concept infringement
- Calhoun v. Lillenas Publishing, 298 F.3d 1228 (2002), copyright infringement claim by songwriter against publishing houses, record labels, churches, Christian book stores, and individuals including the author of the allegedly infringing song
- SunTrust Bank v. Houghton Mifflin Co., 268 F.3d 1257 (2001), copyright infringement claim by trustee holder of the copyright to “Gone With the Wind” against publisher of “The Wind Done Gone” for alleged copyright violations. The Wind Done Gone case is frequently cited for its First Amendment and fair use analysis involving a work of parody.
- Foley v. Luster, 249 F.3d 1281 (2001), Federal Copyright Act preemption case where plaintiff multi-level product distribution corporation distributors sued defendant videographer for state common law indemnification over original copyright infringement action
- Greenberg v. National Geographic Society, 244 F.3d 1267 (2001), copyright infringement case where plaintiff freelance photographer sued defendant magazine publisher over defendant’s digital reproduction of magazines in new CD-ROM format
- Mitek Holdings, Inc. v. Arce Engineering Co., 198 F.3d 840 (1999), appeal of attorney’s fees award pursuant to Copyright Act for action by plaintiff holding company against defendant computer program producer over copyright infringement
- Mitek Holdings, Inc. v. Arce Engineering Co., 89 F.3d 1548 (1996), copyright infringement case where plaintiff holding company sued defendant computer program producer over non literal elements of a computer program
- Bateman v. Mnemonics, Inc., 79 F.3d 1532 (1996), copyright infringement and trade secret misappropriation case where plaintiff software engineers sued defendant parking garage business over computer software interfaces used in parking garage systems
- Warren Publishing, Inc. v. Microdos Data Corp., 115 F.3d 1509 (1997) (en banc), copyright infringement and unfair competition case where plaintiff publisher sued defendant computer software supplier over publication of television and cable factbook
- Bellsouth Adv. & Pub. Corp. v. Donnelley Info. Pub., 999 F.2d 1436 (1993) (en banc), copyright infringement and unfair competition case where plaintiff telephone directory publisher sued defendant telephone directory publisher over competitive classified directory for greater Miami area
- Cable News Network v. Video Monitoring Services, 940 F.2d 1471 (1991), copyright infringement case where plaintiff cable news network sued defendant video copier over unlicensed copies of news broadcasts
- In re Capital Cities/ABC, Inc., 918 F.2d 140 (1990), copyright infringement, Lanham Act, and contractual business interference case where plaintiff book author sued defendant television network over made-for-television movie broadcast
- Optimum Technologies, Inc. v. Henkel Consumer Adhesives, Inc., 496 F.3d 1231 (2007), trademark infringement and unfair competition case where plaintiff flooring company sued defendant consumer goods distributor over adhesive carpet tape product
- Sunamerica Corp. v. Sun Life Assur. Co. of Canada, 77 F.3d 1325, 1330 (1996) [in which Judge Birch’s prior unpublished concurrence was adopted as the law of the circuit by the writing panel], trademark infringement case between two insurance companies over the right to use the SUN LIFE mark in which Judge Birch’s prior unpublished concurrence was adopted as the law of the circuit by a subsequent panel
- Mini Maid Services Co. v. Maid Brigade Systems, Inc., 967 F.2d 1516 (1992), trademark infringement case, regarding franchisor liability, where plaintiff residential cleaning service company sued competitor over service mark MAID BRIGADE