The National Geographic Society is challenging a Florida photographer’s U.S. Supreme Court petition for review, which, if granted, could revisit the high court’s 2001 landmark copyright ruling that said publishers can’t sell previously published freelance contributions for use in computer or online databases without renegotiating publication rights with the authors.

Written by former Independent Counsel Kenneth W. Starr, the National Geographic brief argues that there is no reason for the Supreme Court to hear Florida photographer Jerry Greenberg’s appeal of an 11th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals’ en banc ruling favoring National Geographic that was handed down last summer. That ruling, released by a sharply divided court, addressed conflicting appellate interpretations of New York Times v. Tasini, 533 U.S. 483, and the 1976 revisions of federal copyright laws.

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