Friday, August 24, 2012, 11:08 AM

Wrapping Paper Designer Targets Wal-Mart and Arkansas Supplier with Copyright Lawsuit

Wal-Mart and an Arkansas supplier find themselves defendants to a copyright infringement action filed by a Georgia designer and manufacturer of wrapping paper.

On August 21, 2012, International Greetings USA d/b/a The Gift Wrap Company (“TGWC”), based in Midway, Georgia, filed a complaint in the U.S. District Court for the Northern District of Georgia, Atlanta Division, alleging that Bentonville, Arkansas-based defendants Wal-Mart Stores, Inc. and Seminole Consulting and Marketing, Inc. (“SCM”) infringed five copyrights owned by TGWC for wrapping paper designs.  The complaint also asserts a count for violation of the Georgia Uniform Deceptive Trade Practices Act.

TGWC’s complaint alleges that SCM realized at least $2,691,400.60 in gross revenues from sales of infringing products to Wal-Mart, and that Wal-Mart realized at least $2,481,096.60 in gross revenues from sales of such products to retail consumers.

Exhibits A-E to the Complaint purport to be copies of U.S. Copyright Registrations for the asserted works, all registrations bearing an effective date of February 13, 2012.  TGWC describes Exhibit F to the Complaint as showing the infringing products side-by-side with the copyrighted designs.  Shown below for illustrative purposes is an excerpt from that exhibit.

Excerpt from Exhibit F to complaint

The case is International Greetings USA, Inc. v. Seminole Consulting and Marketing, Inc. and Wal-Mart Stores, Inc., U.S. District Court for the Northern District of Georgia, Atlanta Division, No. 1:12:-cv-02897-SCJ, assigned to U.S. District Judge Steve C. Jones.

UPDATE:  On November 7, 2012, TGWC filed a Notice of Dismissal, resulting in termination of the case on November 8, 2012.  See our November 13 post.

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