Richard Dannay is a partner with Cowan, Liebowitz & Latman, P.C., in New York City. He practices in the areas of copyright, publishing and trademark law, as well as libel, privacy, publicity and related matters. His previous firm, Schwab Goldberg Price & Dannay, where he practiced for over thirty years, merged with his present firm on January 1, 1998.
Mr. Dannay is a past president of The Copyright Society of the U.S.A. and one of its Honorary Trustees. He is a former chair of the Committee on Copyright and Literary Property of the Association of the Bar of the City of New York. He presented the 37th Annual Donald C. Brace Memorial Lecture (Nov. 2007): "Copyright Injunctions and Fair Use: Enter eBay -- Four Factor Fatigue or Four-Factor Freedom?" (Copyright Society of U.S.A.). Published at 55 Copyright Society Journal 449 (2008).
He was lead counsel for the prevailing parties in the following reported cases: Penguin Group (USA) Inc. v. Thomas Steinbeck and Blake Smyle, 537 F.3d 193 (2d Cir. 2008), cert. denied, 129 S. Ct. 2383 (2009) (obtained appellate reversal that invalidated the attempt by John Steinbeck's son and granddaughter to terminate Penguin's publishing agreement under Section 304(d) of the Copyright Act, and that upheld Penguin's right to continue publishing The Grapes of Wrath and other Steinbeck works for their full copyright terms). Bill Graham Archives v. Dorling Kindersley Limited, 448 F.3d 605 (2d Cir. 2006) (affirming summary judgment for defendant publisher that "thumbnail" reproductions of seven concert posters in Grateful Dead biography are transformative fair use). Silverstein v. Penguin Putnam Inc., 368 F.3d 77 (2d Cir. 2004) (vacating permanent injunction against publisher's distribution of Dorothy Parker: Complete Poems, reversing summary judgment, and remanding to district court, holding that plaintiff's creativity, if any, in compilation of Parker's previously-uncollected poems is too slight, under any circumstances, to support copyright injunction against publisher's complete-poems compilation that includes separate section of the uncollected poems). (After trial, 522 F. Supp. 2d 579 (S.D.N.Y. 2007), complaint dismissed because plaintiff's all-inclusive compilation lacks any protectible selection or creativity.) Williams v. Crichton, 84 F.3d 581 (2d Cir. 1996) (successful defense of copyright infringement suit against the book and movie Jurassic Park). Girl Scouts of the U.S.A. and Boy Scouts of America v. Bantam Doubleday Dell Publishing Group, Inc., 996 F.2d 1477 (2d Cir. 1993), aff'g 808 F. Supp. 1112 (S.D.N.Y. 1992) (successful defense of trademark infringement suit, involving First Amendment issues, against Pee Wee Scouts children's book series). Adsani v. Miller, 139 F.3d 67 (2d Cir. 1998) (affirmed Fed. R. App. P. 7 order directing copyright infringement plaintiff-appellant to post security bond to cover defendants-appellees' potential appellate attorney's fees under Section 505 of the Copyright Act, as part of estimated "costs" on appeal). Arica Institute, Inc. v. Palmer and Harper & Row Publishers, 970 F.2d 1067 (2d Cir. 1992) (successful defense of copyright infringement suit, involving defense of "fact estoppel"). Hoch and Marble v. MasterCard International and McCann-Erickson, 284 F. Supp. 2d 1217 (D. Minn. 2003) (summary judgment dismissing copyright infringement complaint against series of baseball-related "priceless" television commercials). Penguin Group (USA) Inc. v. American Buddha, 609 F.3d 30 (2d Cir. 2010), 16 N.Y. 3d 295 (2011) (on certified question), 640 F. 3d 497 (2d Cir. 2011) (important ruling on NY long-arm jurisdiction supporting fight of publishers and authors against online digital piracy).
Mr. Dannay earned his LL.B. in 1964 from Harvard Law School, and his A.B., magna cum laude, in 1961 from Harvard College, where he was Phi Beta Kappa. He is admitted to the bars of New York, the Second and Federal Circuits, and the U.S. Supreme Court.