Who owns the copyrights of obituaries? A recent court case in Canada may have far-reaching implications for genealogists in many countries. While the recent court case applies only to Canada, similar copyright issues exist in many other countries.
Thomson v. Afterlife Network Inc., 2019 FC 545, is a (Canadian) Federal Court decision in which the Court considers the existence of copyright in obituaries used in an e-commerce context.
The case involves a class action lawsuit claiming that posted obituaries and photographs posted in local funeral home web sites were copied and republished by the plaintiff and other class members without the permission of the true copyright holders. The suit then claims that the defendant infringed the copyright and the moral rights of the class members.