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Sex discrimination, Beyoncé and Wikimedia

Legal news items

Sex discrimination in the office on the rise as complaints jump 14pc

Acas, the conciliation service, says it received 7,175 helpline calls related to sex discrimination in the year to the end of March, a 14pc increase on the year before, when it recorded 6,273 calls.

More than 90pc of these were from employees, and eight in 10 employee calls were from women.

Acas, which decided to make the numbers public for the first time, said more employers and managers need to understand the laws around equality and to be aware of any behaviour that could be considered as sex discrimination.

The organisation has introduced a new guide that highlights what counts as sex discrimination and how it applies to either men or women.

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Beyoncé files lawsuit against 'Feyonce'

She is one of the most successful female artists with a string of number one hits but now Beyoncé has filed a lawsuit against Texas-based company "Feyonce" for using her trademark name and referencing her track Single Ladies on their merchandise.

The hit-maker has sued to stop the sale of T-shirts, sweaters, hoodies and even coffee mugs bearing the "Feyonce" name, which she claims is too close to her own trademark name.

The 34-year-old has filed a federal lawsuit in Manhattan against Feyonce Inc, Andre Maurice, Leana Lopez and Lee Lee, accusing them of "brazenly" selling infringing "Feyonce" merchandise on their website.

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Wikimedia's free photo database of artworks violates copyright

Sweden’s highest court on Monday found Wikimedia Sweden guilty of violating copyright laws by providing free access to its database of artwork photographs without the artists’ consent.

Wikimedia, part of the not-for-profit foundation which oversees Wikipedia among other online resources, has a database of royalty-free photographs that can be used by the public, for educational purposes or the tourism industry.

The Visual Copyright Society in Sweden (BUS), which represents painters, photographers, illustrators and designers among others, had sued Wikimedia Sweden for making photographs of their artwork displayed in public places available in its database, without their consent.

The Supreme Court found in favour of BUS, arguing that while individuals were permitted to photograph artwork on display in public spaces, it was “an entirely different matter” to make the photographs available in a database for free and unlimited use.

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