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Ergun Caner Loses ‘Fair Use’ Lawsuit In Failed Attempt To Silence Critics

22 April 2014 RightWingWatch 27 Comments Email This Post Email This Post

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Ergun Caner Loses ‘Fair Use’ Lawsuit In Failed Attempt To Silence Critics

Submitted by Brian Tashman, RightWingWatch

Ergun Caner has lost his lawsuit against a blogger who criticized the Religious Right figure as a fraud, with a federal judge ruling last week that Caner’s case had no merit.

After the September 11 attacks, Caner built a career around his purported conversion from Islamic extremism to Christianity, but his testimony was later exposed as fictitious. Not only did he completely fabricate details about his background — including facts about his birthplace, upbringing, and his family — but he also spoke gibberish during his speeches, which he claimed was Arabic.

Caner led Liberty University’s theological seminary at the time but the university cut ties with him following the revelations and he now heads Brewton-Parker College, which is affiliated with the Southern Baptist Convention.

A federal judge dismissed Caner’s lawsuit, a thinly veiled attempt to shut down criticism, against blogger Jason Smathers, as the Associated Baptist Press reports today:

Ergun Caner, president of Brewton-Parker College in Mount Vernon, Ga., filed a lawsuit last summer claiming ownership of two videos that Smathers posted of Caner speaking as an expert on Islamic culture in training for U.S. Marines preparing to deploy in 2005.

U.S. District Judge Terry Means, however, said Caner failed to make a case and that Smathers used the material fairly, as copyright law permits, for “purposes such as criticism, comment, [or] news reporting.”

“His sole purpose was to expose the inconsistencies in Dr. Caner’s biography and criticize a public figure,” the judge determined. If the unauthorized reproduction of his lectures caused Caner any financial loss, he continued, it was the result of “legitimate criticism” of his words.

The misuse of video “takedown notices” — the same method employed by another Religious Right activist who tried to shut down Right Wing Watch’s YouTube page — was one of the focuses of the trial. As the judge notes in his ruling [PDF], the blogger’s actions are protected as fair use.

In 2013, Dr. Caner filed a “takedown notice” with Viddler.com, claiming that the videos were posted without authorization and in violation of his copyright. Smathers challenged the removal of the videos, which ultimately resulted in the present lawsuit by Dr. Caner, alleging copyright infringement in violation of 17 U.S.C. §§ 106,506.

Smathers claims that he posted he videos featuring Dr. Caner as a religiously based criticism of a public figure and, thus, his posting constituted fair use.

The Court notes that Dr. Caner has apparently conceded this issue since he has offered no argument in his response with respect to Smathers’s assertion of fair use.

Dr. Caner’s concession notwithstanding, the facts of this case support the application of fair use.

The affirmative defense of fair use is codified at 17 U.S.C. § 107 and provides that “the fair use of a copyrighted work, including such use by reproduction in copies . . . , for purposes such as criticism, comment, [or] news reporting . . . , is not an infringement of copyright.”

All of Dr. Caner’s claims of copyright infringement against Smathers are hereby DISMISSED WITH PREJUDICE.

– See more at: http://www.rightwingwatch.org/content/ergun-caner-loses-fair-use-lawsuit-after-attempt-silence-critics#sthash.5g7LJ8PY.dpuf





27 Comments »

  1. this guy is still relevant?

  2. this guy is still relevant?

  3. Why do I keep hearing stories about all these people pretending to be “ex-Muslims” to appear more credible.. all just to spread hate on Islam?

  4. Why do I keep hearing stories about all these people pretending to be “ex-Muslims” to appear more credible.. all just to spread hate on Islam?

  5. I bet he couldn’t even recite AL Fatiha

  6. I bet he couldn’t even recite AL Fatiha

  7. Because right wing media needs a constant excuse to spread fear. Even though theres is nothing scary about muslims. They havent brainwashed all of us.

  8. Because right wing media needs a constant excuse to spread fear. Even though theres is nothing scary about muslims. They havent brainwashed all of us.

  9. this is to funny.. he was speaking jibberish to pretend to speak Arabic.. lol what moron listened to it and didn’t realize he wasn’t speaking a language.. He is an idiot and is looking really stupid now! Let him soak in it now as well as the channels who posted him.

  10. this is to funny.. he was speaking jibberish to pretend to speak Arabic.. lol what moron listened to it and didn’t realize he wasn’t speaking a language.. He is an idiot and is looking really stupid now! Let him soak in it now as well as the channels who posted him.

  11. I hope Americans are a bit smarter than believing this idiot to be an “ex-Muslim”.

  12. I hope Americans are a bit smarter than believing this idiot to be an “ex-Muslim”.

  13. A Teapartier, no doubt.

  14. A Teapartier, no doubt.

  15. The guy probably thinks he really is an ex Muslim. Lol

  16. The guy probably thinks he really is an ex Muslim. Lol

  17. There are so many of them making a buck off of the “ex-Muslim (terrorist) to Christian” ploy. So many of these guys claim to be former Muslims and/or former terrorists, and because they look Middle Eastern, then of COURSE they must have actually been Muslims! smh

    I’m always suspicious of people who try to make their own chosen religion look more appealling by talking down and negatively generalizing about another. It’s a distraction tactic.

    The way I figure it, if you believe something is true, then you don’t need to drag another group through the mud or tell lies or any of that other stuff. Doing that shows a lack of certainty in your own beliefs.

  18. There are so many of them making a buck off of the “ex-Muslim (terrorist) to Christian” ploy. So many of these guys claim to be former Muslims and/or former terrorists, and because they look Middle Eastern, then of COURSE they must have actually been Muslims! smh

    I’m always suspicious of people who try to make their own chosen religion look more appealling by talking down and negatively generalizing about another. It’s a distraction tactic.

    The way I figure it, if you believe something is true, then you don’t need to drag another group through the mud or tell lies or any of that other stuff. Doing that shows a lack of certainty in your own beliefs.

  19. Walid Shoebat is another. I heard he’s a fake.

  20. This scum shouldn’t lied about his religious background as well as everyone else. It shows dishonesty .

  21. This scum shouldn’t lied about his religious background as well as everyone else. It shows dishonesty .

  22. Thank you Heather , Its sad people, they shouldn’t ‘cry wolf’, becasue if they ever were in actuality being persecuted, which would never happen because they go on a new Crusades before they let it happen (which I believe is what I’m seeing bits and pieces of today), no one would care or believe them. I only have my beliefs which are not that of any religion today, only what I would call my own real world experience with what would be called by most the divine/god/allah/jehova/yahweh ect. It isn’t a diety. Its within me. And it tells me not to hate. Not even to ‘tolerate’, which is another way of saying ‘I’ll pretend to like someone’, but rather to try and have love for everyone. And everything. If our actions were to be judged, and did carry over to another side of reality, I want to know my heart and mind will weigh on the side of light and love. Not darkness and hate. I have no room for hate in my heart. I will not allow myself to die or be killed by myself of a heart attack from stresses brought on over an imaginary agenda. Especially one by such a privileged group who forget how good they have it, and who overwhelmingly seized control and have been in power for millennia under the jack boot military called catholic /christian churches of rome. Anyway, if an extremist from any religion wants to kill me or randomly they’re going to regardless. So there is no use in living in fear. Not when we only have a few decade here at most if we are lucky.

  23. Thank you Heather , Its sad people, they shouldn’t ‘cry wolf’, becasue if they ever were in actuality being persecuted, which would never happen because they go on a new Crusades before they let it happen (which I believe is what I’m seeing bits and pieces of today), no one would care or believe them. I only have my beliefs which are not that of any religion today, only what I would call my own real world experience with what would be called by most the divine/god/allah/jehova/yahweh ect. It isn’t a diety. Its within me. And it tells me not to hate. Not even to ‘tolerate’, which is another way of saying ‘I’ll pretend to like someone’, but rather to try and have love for everyone. And everything. If our actions were to be judged, and did carry over to another side of reality, I want to know my heart and mind will weigh on the side of light and love. Not darkness and hate. I have no room for hate in my heart. I will not allow myself to die or be killed by myself of a heart attack from stresses brought on over an imaginary agenda. Especially one by such a privileged group who forget how good they have it, and who overwhelmingly seized control and have been in power for millennia under the jack boot military called catholic /christian churches of rome. Anyway, if an extremist from any religion wants to kill me or randomly they’re going to regardless. So there is no use in living in fear. Not when we only have a few decade here at most if we are lucky.

  24. This is all you need to watch to know that this Caner is a grade-A clown and a fraud of epic proportions. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ZYaFU9EDUEI

  25. This is all you need to watch to know that this Caner is a grade-A clown and a fraud of epic proportions. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ZYaFU9EDUEI

  26. The girls have not been kidnapped in Pakistan.

  27. The girls have not been kidnapped in Pakistan.

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