The Coded Court Case continues (as does our love for alliteration and legal language). The Associated Press reports that the Random House legal team is confident it has adequately rebuffed the allegations of copyright infringement brought by two of the three authors of Holy Blood, Holy Grail:
"The claimants' case is now in tatters," said John Baldwin, representing Random House. ...
"It should also be clear that Mr. Brown did not copy ('The Holy Blood and the Holy Grail') as alleged by the claimants," Baldwin said.
"However, even if Mr. Brown had taken these ideas from (the book), the claimants will still fail. The ideas are of too general a nature to be capable of copyright protection. The claimants' claim relates to ideas at a high level of generality, which copyright does not protect."
Meanwhile, novelist Lewis Perdue (who unsuccessfully sued Brown for plagiarism last year) reports, via a contact in London, that things might not be so rosy for Random House and Brown:
Baigent and Leigh's barrister traced out the connections through Blythe Brown's research documents and frequently got Dan to concede that HBHG was the likely source of a range of phrases and sentences.
There were about a dozen of these over the course of the day. The word alterations in a lot of cases were pretty minor "worthy of the Gestapo or KGB" in HBHG became "worthy of the CIA" in DVC in a description of the Church's Friday 13 hit on the Templars.
Dan Brown tried to say that it was all historical fact, which generally it is, but both Baigent and Leigh's barrister and the judge were not quite accepting that, finding some significance in his use of clearly similar language.
The Judge: "that is a different point ... whether it is history or not, you've taken the language from HBHG."
Yes, your Honor, it certainly appears that way. Closing arguments for the plaintiffs will be made on Monday.