LB (Plastics) Ltd v Swish Products Ltd: ChD 1979

Whitford J said: ‘The cases since the Act of 1911 have, however, I think quite plainly established that no originality of thought is needed to sustain a claim to copyright. Under copyright ideas are not protected, only the skill and labour needed to give any given idea some particular material form, for it is the form in which the work is presented that is protected by copyright. That need only be original in the sense that it is all the author’s own work.’ and
‘There is another aspect of originality which must be dealt with, and can conveniently be dealt with at this stage. That is the question as to whether there can be copyright in a copy. Here again it must be in my judgment a question of degree. It arises in this case because of a suggestion that some of the drawings relied upon by the plaintiffs may have been made from models first produced in three dimensions, which models, not being works of artistic craftmanship, would not attract copyright … There is this further point to be considered that some of the drawings undoubtedly derive in part from earlier drawings, but on the evidence I am still of the opinion that each work relied upon* can claim to be a separate original artistic work attracting copyright … The draughtsmen called on both sides made it quite plain that even where there has been a previous drawing or some sketches have been made which are in part redrawn, the making of any drawing of the kind I have to consider is a skilled business involving hours of labour, although the end result may seem relatively simple.’
Whitford J
[1979] RPC 551
Copyright Act 1911
England and Wales
Cited by:
CitedInterlego AG v Tyco Industries Inc PC 5-May-1988
How much new material for new copyright
(Hong Kong) Toy building bricks were manufactured by Lego in accordance with engineering drawings made for that purpose. One issue was whether new drawings made since 1972, altering the original drawings in various minor respects but added new . .
At First InstanceLB (Plastics) Ltd v Swish Products Ltd HL 3-Jan-1979
Access and Similarity base proof of Copying
Copyright is intended to protect one person against his work being copied by another. One person must not be permitted to appropriate the result of another’s labour; it is for the plaintiff to establish and prove as a matter of fact that copying has . .
CitedAn NHS Trust and Others v Y and Another SC 30-Jul-2018
The court was asked whether a court order must always be obtained before clinically assisted nutrition and hydration, which is keeping alive a person with a prolonged disorder of consciousness, can be withdrawn, or whether, in some circumstances, . .

Lists of cited by and citing cases may be incomplete.
Updated: 03 September 2021; Ref: scu.269661