National Opinions

The Daily Breeze: 'Barbie vs. Bratz'

The legal battle between El Segundo-based Mattel Inc. and the maker of the Bratz dolls resulted in a ruling earlier this month that sends a loud-and-clear message about copyright infringement.

A ruling like that of U.S. District Judge Stephen Larson in Riverside is truly welcome given the amount of intellectual property theft worldwide, from software to films to music to clothing designs. The court decision, which calls for the removal of all Bratz dolls from the shelves by February, is certainly a boost for Mattel, the maker of Barbie, one of the products that competes with Bratz dolls for the attention of young girls around the nation.

A jury ruled that the El Segundo toymaker should receive $100 million for copyright infringement and breach of contract.

Although the court decision will no doubt be appealed and the Bratz dolls could see daylight again under some future marketing agreement, we're glad that this decision sent the duel message of standing up for intellectual property rights and raising important questions about the effects of marketing such provocative images to young children.