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Ivymedia Corp. v. Ilikebus, Inc.

United States District Court, D. Massachusetts

May 5, 2016

IVYMEDIA CORPORATION, Plaintiff,
v.
ILIKEBUS, INC., ALAN ZOU, TONG WEI AND JOHN DOE, Defendants.

MEMORANDUM & ORDER

NATHANIEL M. GORTON UNITED STATES DISTRICT JUDGE

This is a copyright infringement dispute between two competing companies that provide online ticketing and reservation services for bus companies. Plaintiff IvyMedia Corporation (“IvyMedia” or “plaintiff”) alleges that defendants iLIKEBUS, Inc. (“iLIKEBUS”), Alan Zou (“Zou”), Tong Wei (“Wei”) and John Doe (collectively, “defendants”) unlawfully copied its website features for use on their website to poach its clients.

Pending before the Court are two motions to amend the pleadings and two motions to amend the deadlines in the scheduling order. For the reasons that follow, 1) plaintiff’s motion to amend the complaint will be denied, 2) defendants’ motion to amend the answer will be denied, 3) defendants’ motion to amend the scheduling order will be denied and 4) the joint motion to amend the scheduling order will be allowed.

I. Background and procedural history

IvyMedia initiated the instant action against iLIKEBUS, Zou, Wei and Doe in May, 2015. Its complaint alleged violations of the Copyright Act, the Lanham Act, the Anticybersquatting Consumer Protection Act (“the ACPA”) and three state law violations. Defendants moved to dismiss the complaint.

In July, 2015, the Court allowed, in part, and denied, in part, defendants’ motion to dismiss. The Court found that the copyright claim was “tenuous” but survived dismissal. The Court then dismissed the Lanham Act claim as duplicative of the copyright claim, the ACPA claim for failure to state a claim and the state law claims as preempted by the federal Copyright Act.

Shortly thereafter, defendants filed an answer that did not assert any counterclaims.

The Court convened a scheduling conference in September, 2015 and instructed the parties to file amendments or supplements to their pleadings, if any, on or before January 31, 2016. IvyMedia moved to amend its complaint to add nine new claims on January 20, 2016 and defendants moved to amend their answer to add two antitrust counterclaims on the last day for filing such amendments. Defendants also moved to extend the scheduling deadlines by six months to allow for discovery on the new claims and counterclaims which drastically altered the composition of the case.

In April, 2016, the parties jointly moved to extend the scheduling deadlines by one month in order to complete depositions with respect to IvyMedia’s copyright claim.

II. Plaintiff’s motion to amend the complaint

In its motion to amend the complaint, IvyMedia seeks

1) to bolster its remaining copyright claim with additional facts,
2) to revive its previously dismissed
a) Lanham Act claim of false designation ...

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