‘The Glass House’ bombs, so CBS drops suit against ABC

By Pankaj Ladhar of Manos • Alwine P.L.

In an earlier post, we told Miami readers about how CBS had sued ABC, alleging that ABC’s new game show “The Glass House” was a ripoff of CBS’ “Big Brother.” At the time, CBS was claiming that ABC was infringing on its copyrights because “The Glass House” copied “stole every aspect of Big Brother’s tangible creative expression.”
But now, things have changed.

On Friday, CBS moved to voluntary dismiss its lawsuit against ABC without prejudice because, to put it simply, “The Glass House” has bombed with viewers. (To dismiss something without prejudice means that if you change your mind, you can bring the lawsuit again. If a judge dismisses something with prejudice, that means the same claim is meritless and cannot be brought again.) CBS said it did not feel it was necessary to continue with the lawsuit since “The Glass House” is likely to be cancelled due to low ratings.

Back in June, CBS had sought an emergency restraining order that would have stopped ABC from airing “The Glass House” until the lawsuit was resolved, but a U.S. District Court Judge declined to grant the restraining order because he felt CBS had not shown that such a drastic move was necessary or would be successful.

CBS is still suing producers of “The Glass House” who had previously worked on “Big Brother” because it believes they infringed on CBS’ trade secrets (essentially, a way of doing business that is valuable because it is secret) when they went to ABC and created a similar game show.

Source: The Hollywood Reporter, “CBS Drops ‘Glass House’ Lawsuit Against ABC” Matthew Belloni, Aug. 17, 2012