U.S. Federal Judge Robert Patterson Jr ruled today in favor of J.K. Rowling and Warner Bros in their lawsuit against RDR Books’ unauthorized Harry Potter Lexicon. The judge agreed with Rowling that fan Steven Vander Ark violated her copyright with his plans to publish a “Harry Potter Lexiconause and it would cause her irreparable harm as a writer of the 7-volume beloved novels. The reclusive Rowling traveled from Scotland to NYC in April to testify when she sued Michigan-based RDR Books last year to stop publication of the lexicon. Vander Ark runs the unofficial Harry Potter Lexicon Web site. J.K. Rowling today issued the following statement: “I took no pleasure at all in bringing legal action and am delighted that this issue has been resolved favourably. I went to court to uphold the right of authors everywhere to protect their own original work. The court has upheld that right. The proposed book took an enormous amount of my work and added virtually no original commentary of its own. Now the court has ordered that it must not be published. Many books have been published which offer original insights into the world of Harry Potter. The Lexicon just is not one of them.” Warner Bros had this to say: “We are obviously pleased with today’s ruling by Judge Patterson supporting the position that the proposed lexicon book infringes on Ms. Rowling’s rights. As a content company, it is imperative that we work vigorously on all fronts to protect the intellectual property rights of those who create the stories and characters, words, pictures and music that entertain and benefit the worldwide audience.” And RDR Books said about the ruling in the Southern District Of New York: “We are encouraged by the fact the Court recognized that as a general matter authors do not have the right to stop the publication of reference guides and companion books about literary works. As for the Lexicon, we are obviously disappointed with the result, and RDR is considering all of its options.”
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