The BC Supreme Court’s decision in Century 21 Limited Partnership v Rogers Communications Inc., 2011 BCSC 1196, [Link available here], sounds like a law-school mooting problem, given the number of issues it covers.
Issue 2: did Zoocasa infringe Century 21’s copyright? Yes, and no fair dealing exception was made out (the court also refused to apply the US doctrine of ‘transformative use’ as a basis for fair dealing).
Issue 3: did Century 21 have a claim for trespass to goods? No: not clear electronic access will give rise to such a claim, but in any event Century 21 had no possessory interest in its servers, which belonged to a third party.
Issue 4: was Rogers liable for the acts of its subsidiary, which it had incorporated and funded? No reason to treat parent and sub as one; no reason to conclude that Rogers controlled Zoocasa’s activities or instructed it to conduct them in breach of the law.
Issue 5: did Rogers induce Zoocasa’s breach of the contract with Century 21? No: insufficient proof of intention to procure breach, given the level of Rogers’ involvement.
Issue 6: for the purposes of assessing damages for breach of contract, did Zoocasa breach a duty of good faith? No: it was merely negligent in not knowing that industry norms would preclude its use of Century 21’s listing information.
Result: nominal damages for breach of contract, $30K for copyright infringement, Zoocasa permanently enjoined from accessing the Century 21 site.