Monday, June 22, 2015

US Supreme Court Quotes Stan Lee When Deciding Spider-Man Patent Case

Rich Johnston:
This morning the Supreme Court [of the United States] ruled on a case regarding rights payments to the toy, the Web Blaster, that lets kids create something akin to Spider-Man’s comic book webbing, and licensed out by Marvel Enterprises. Patented by Stephen Kimble in 1990, the court decided against him....

[T]he opinion of the court’s majority, as expressed by Justice Elena Kagen, was rather creative itself. Cutting and pasting from the court’s conclusion, she did a little quoting of her own.

What we can decide, we can undecide. But stare decisis teaches that we should exercise that authority sparingly. Cf. S. Lee and S. Ditko, Amazing Fantasy No. 15: “Spider- Man,” p. 13 (1962) (“[I]n this world, with great power there must also come—great responsibility”). Finding many reasons for staying the stare decisis course and no “special justification” for departing from it, we decline Kimble’s invitation to overrule Brulotte.

She also quoted the line form the famous cartoon theme song when describing the item in question in that it “does whatever a spider can”.

Nice to see a sense of humor from the nation's high court.