From the Bench, Nautical Cutthroats

Do you remember the "Barbie Girl" song? Have a listen in case you've forgotten (be warned, it will get stuck in your head). We just read the case against Aqua by Mattel. Mattel was not happy about the "parody" of their product and called Aqua bank robbers who stole their property. Here is the circuit court judge in response to a defamation claim against Mattel for those choice words:

"MCA Records (Aqua) filed a counterclaim for defamation based on the Mattel representative's use of the words 'bank robber,' 'heist,' 'crime,' and theft.' But all of these are variants of the invective most often hurled at accused infringers, namely "piracy." No one hearing this accusation understands intellectual property owners to be saying that infringers are nautical cutthroats with eyepatches and peg legs who board galleons to plunder cargo. In context, all these terms are actionable 'rhetorical hyperbole.' The parties are advised to chill."

from the 9th Circuit in Mattel v. MCA Records