Whimsicality v. Rubie’s Costume

Whimsicality had a case on Rubie’s Costume Co., Inc claiming that Rubie was their
costumes’ knock-offs. The appellant asked for an injunctive relief based on the copyright claim.
However, the court ruled in favor of Rubie and denied Whimsicality the injunctive relief. The
two parties then filed for an appeal and a cross-appeal and committed on basing their arguments
on retrial to the latter matter in question. The court argued that Whimsicality’s costumes could
not be copyrighted. Therefore, their registration on the copyright of their costumes was filed as
Whimsicality was said to have acquired its registrations on costumes copyrights by
giving misinformation and misrepresentation to the United States copyright office. Later,
Whimsicality brought in new evidence showing that their copyright registrations were not
perpetrated through fraud. Still, the second circuit declined the copyright legit documents. The
judge banned Whimsicality’s’ copyright contravention assertations despite their copyright
registrations being legit.
It is vital for companies always to possess valid copyright. Any signs that a copyright
registration of a company was obtained illegally would disadvantage them in court. Ownership
of a copyright certificate gives an unbeatable assumption that the task at hand is copyrightable.
Whimsicality lost the case to Rubie’s because they had a misrepresentation on their costumes and
had no legit copyrights that had enforcement capabilities.
The courts have placed costumes in the clothing classification, therefore, claiming that
they are not in a position to be copyrighted. However, these assumptions that costumes cannot be
copyrighted may be incorrect because the decorating components of the fabric pattern are
copyrightable. Moreover, there is a possibility that if the costumes are crafted well enough, they

can be classified as sculptures. The court dismissed the claims from Whimsicality and termed
their actions as deception. The court went further and rejected Whimsicality’s copyright claims
arguing that the registration was obtained improperly.

Whimsicality v. Rubie’s Costume Co. 891 F.2d 452 (2d Cir Ct App 1989)

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