Pooh Copyright Saga Continues…

The copyright royalties fight between the Walt Disney Company and the Slesinger family has taken another turn back to the courts. Disney broke off the mediated negotiations with the Slesingers and seemed pretty firm about it too.

"We suggested to the magistrate that having a settlement conference at this time would not be meaningful," said attorney Daniel Petrocelli, who is representing Disney in the dispute. "There’s really nothing to settle."

Sounds like the two sides are as far apart as ever. The Slesingers claim Disney is in breach of contract and owe them billions in royalties on forms of media (DVD’s for instance) that weren’t included in the original rights package, plus other accounting differences. Disney claims that the contract was drawn broad enough to encompass new media.

The Slesinger case will now proceed on appeal after the previous judge threw out the case when the Slesinger’s attorneys were caught rummaging through Disney’s trash for an edge in the case. I have to think Disney feels they’re in the stronger position here or they wouldn’t have broken off negotiations. The Slesinger’s need to realize this isn’t the same Disney they were fighting against 5 years ago. Steve Jobs did and look how well that turned out.