Jonathan Zavin

Loeb & Loeb attorney for the plaintiffs, Jonathan Zavin.

Jonathan Zavin is an intellectual property attorney with the law firm Loeb & Loeb who has litigated scores of copyright and trademark cases. He has also advised major film studios, producers, recording companies, new media industries and publishing companies.

Previous Star Trek Case

Zavin has previously litigated a prominent Star Trek copyright case with similarities to the Axanar case.

In Paramount Pictures Corp. v. Carol Publishing Group, et al., Zavin successfully sought an injunction preventing publication of a book, “The Joy of Trek: How to Enhance Your Relationship with a ‘Star Trek’ Fan,” published in 1997 by Carol Publishing Group of Secaucus, N.J.

'Axanar' Similarities

Like the Axanar suit, this 1998 case involved a fan accusing Paramount of trying to prohibit him from using the Star Trek copyright after turning a blind eye to its use for years by many others. Representing Paramount, Zavin asked a judge to stop sales of the book by fan Samuel Ramer, and asked for $22 million in damages for all 220 television episodes mentioned in the book.1)

NO JOY for this book whose publication was halted by Jonathan Zavin in a 1998 copyright case with similarities to Axanar.

The judge in that case issued Zavin’s requested injunction, finding the publisher failed on all four factors weighed to determine fair use, and rejected its claim that Paramount had relinquished its copyright by not prosecuting other unauthorized books.

While the book cannot serve as a market substitute for the richly entertaining television shows and movies, it can interfere with Paramount’s market for derivative works. … Defendants claim that their book differs from any work presently licensed by Paramount. This makes no difference. … Defendants also argue that Plaintiff’s lack of legal action against other allegedly infringing indicates that “The Joy of Trek” will not damage a potential market. This argument is without merit. … The lack of earlier litigation against other similar works is simply irrelevant. A self-avowed substitute for other Paramount licensed products adversely impacts the market for derivative works.2) [emphasis added]

Biography

At the request of the United States government, Zavin has advised the governments of Estonia, Latvia, Lithuania, Colombia, Kazakhstan, Greece and South Africa to consult regarding the protection of intellectual property rights.

Zavin lectures extensively about copyright law before law and industry organizations, including the Copyright Society of the U.S.A. and the American Bar Association. He serves on editorial board of the Loeb & Loeb IP/Entertainment Case Law Weekly Update for Motion Picture Studios and Television Networks.3)

Education

Columbia University School of Law, J.D., 1973; St. John’s College, B.A., 1968.

Honors and Awards

  • Named “Media and Entertainment MVP” by Law360 (2014)
  • Named “New York City Copyright Lawyer of the Year,” Best Lawyers (2014)
  • Named “Top Entertainment Attorney” in Variety’s “Legal Impact Report” (2013 and 2015)
  • Named an “IP Star” by Managing Intellectual Property magazine (2013-2015)
  • Named “Best Lawyer” in Copyright Law, The Best Lawyers in America, published by Woodward White, Inc. (2012-2016)
  • Named “Top Lawyer” in The Hollywood Reporter, ESQ.’s “Power Lawyers Top 100” list (2007-2008, and 2010-2014)
  • Named in Chambers USA, America’s Leading Lawyers for Business, in New York Media & Entertainment: Copyright & Contract Disputes (2007-2015 editions)
  • Named “New York Metro Super Lawyer” in Intellectual Property Litigation by Thomson Reuters (2006-2012, 2014-2015 editions); Named “New York Metro Super Lawyer” in Intellectual Property Litigation and General Litigation (2013 edition)

Affiliations

  • Member, Copyright Society of the U.S.A.
  • Former Member, Executive Committee, Copyright Society of the U.S.A.
  • Former Vice Chair, Board of Visitors and Governors, St. John’s College

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