Commercial truck driving school sued for unauthorized use of copyrighted photograph in training materials


Blaine Harrington III vs. Commercial Truck Driver Training of Atlanta, Inc. d/b/a Katlaw Truck Driving SchoolCivil Action No. 1: 22-cv-02282-SCJ (ND Ga. June 8, 2022)

Plaintiff Blaine Harrington III filed an action against Defendant Commercial Truck Driver Training of Atlanta, Inc. d/b/a Katlaw Truck Driving School on June 8, 2022 in the Northern District of Georgia. The applicant is a travel and location photographer based in Denver, Colorado with particular expertise in photography in Europe and other parts of the world. The applicant has been selected as Travel Photographer of the Year four times and his work has been featured by renowned news, business and travel magazines such as Newsweek, Travel + Leisure and many more. At issue is a series of photographic works created by the plaintiff in 2009 in Arches National Park near Moab, Utah, and registered with the US Copyright Office.

See Dekt. 1 to 3.

The complaint alleges that the defendant provides commercial driver’s license training and employment assistance for trucking companies. Defendant operates a website and social media sites in connection with the advertising and marketing of its services. On or around June 23, 2018, Defendant allegedly posted a copy of Plaintiff’s copyrighted photograph in a video on his Facebook page without Plaintiff’s permission. Although published in 2018, the complaint alleges that, despite his diligence, the plaintiff did not discover the defendant’s unauthorized use of his copyrighted photograph until February 2022.

Complaint asserts causes of action for copyright infringement in violation of 17 USC 101 and following. and seeks to recover actual damages in addition to restitution of defendant’s profits pursuant to 17 USC 504(b), or alternatively, statutory damages pursuant to 17 USC 504(c). The complaint also seeks recovery of attorneys’ fees and an injunction. The case is assigned to Judge Steve CarMichael Jones.

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