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Gardner v. Cafepress Inc.

United States District Court, S.D. California

December 16, 2014

STEVEN M. GARDNER, an individual, Plaintiff,
v.
CAFEPRESS INC., a Delaware corporation, PRIDEANDMORE, a person or business, TELLAPART, INC., a Delaware corporation, Defendants.

ORDER:(1) GRANTING CAFEPRESS INC.'S MOTION TO DISMISS; [ECF No. 12] (2) GRANTING TELLAPART, INC.'S MOTION TO DISMISS; [ECF No. 18] (3) VACATING HEARING DATE

GONZALO P. CURIEL, District Judge.

I. INTRODUCTION

Before the Court are Defendant CafePress Inc.'s ("CafePress") and Defendant TellApart, Inc.'s ("TellApart") (collectively, "Defendants") Motions to Dismiss. (ECF Nos. 12, 18.) Plaintiff Steven M. Gardner ("Plaintiff") opposes. (ECF No. 20.)

The parties have fully briefed the motion. (ECF Nos. 12, 18, 20, 22.) The Court finds the motion suitable for disposition without oral argument pursuant to Civil Local Rule 7.1(d)(1). For the reasons discussed below, the Court GRANTS both motions to dismiss.

II. PROCEDURAL HISTORY

On April 4, 2014, Plaintiff filed a complaint alleging copyright infringement and violations of 17 U.S.C. § 1202 by CafePress and one of its users. (ECF No. 1.) On September 8, 2014, Plaintiff filed a first amended complaint ("FAC") adding TellApart as a defendant. (ECF No. 6.)

On October 3, 2014, CafePress filed a motion to dismiss. (ECF No. 12.) On October 20, 2014, TellApart filed a motion to dismiss. (ECF No. 18.) On November 7, 2014, Plaintiff filed an opposition to Defendants' motions. (ECF No. 20.) On November 21, 2014, Defendants filed an reply to Plaintiff's opposition. (ECF No. 22.)

Plaintiff and CafePress are also engaged in another copyright dispute before this Court to which this case has been low-numbered, Gardner v. CafePress (" Gardner I "), No. 3:13-cv-1108-GPC-JLB. ( See ECF No. 4.)

III. FACTUAL BACKGROUND

Plaintiff alleges that he is copyright holder of U.S. Copyright VA-851-029 ("Harmony of Wolves"). (FAC ¶ 9.) Plaintiff alleges that CafePress user PrideAndMore infringed Plaintiff's copyright in "Harmony of Wolves." ( Id. ¶¶ 9, 25.) Plaintiff alleges that CafePress infringed Plaintiff's copyright in "Harmony of Wolves." ( Id. ¶ 26.) Plaintiff alleges that CafePress sent TellApart infringing copies of "Harmony of Wolves" and that TellApart advertised these images on the internet. ( Id. ¶ 27.) Plaintiff alleges that "defendants intentionally removed or altered CMI, distributed CMI knowing that the CMI was removed or altered, distributed copies of images knowing that CMI has been removed or altered." ( Id. ¶ 53.)

IV. LEGAL STANDARD

A. Judicial Notice

Generally, on a motion to dismiss, courts limit review to the contents of the complaint and may only consider extrinsic evidence that is properly presented to the court as part of the complaint. See Lee v. City of L.A., 250 F.3d 668, 688-89 (9th Cir. 2001) (court may consider documents physically attached to the complaint or documents necessarily relied on by the complaint if their authenticity is not contested). However, a court may take notice of undisputed "matters of public record" subject to judicial notice without converting a motion to dismiss into a motion for summary judgment. Id. (citing FED. R. EVID. 201; MGIC Indem. Corp. v. Weisman, 803 F.2d 500, 504 (9th Cir. 1986)). Under Federal Rule of Evidence 201, a district court may take notice of facts not subject ...


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