The first sale doctrine entitles the owner of a particular copy of a copyrighted work to resell or otherwise dispose of that copy without need for permission from, or remuneration to, the copyright owner. 17 U.S.C. §109(a).
A 9th Circuit panel reversed the district's court grant of summary judgment to the plaintiff-reseller, concluding that an individual that resold used copies of software the original licensee acquired pursuant to a restrictive software licensing agreement was not entitled to invoke the first sale doctrine or the essential step defense. See Vernor v. Autodesk Inc.., 2010 WL 3516435.
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