J.K. Rowling to testify in bid to block publication of 'Harry Potter Lexicon'

Monday, April 14, 2008

NEW YORK -- Author J.K. Rowling is eager to tell a judge this week that one of her biggest fans is in fantasyland if he believes a "Harry Potter" encyclopedia he plans to publish does not violate her copyrights.

The showdown between Rowling and Steven Vander Ark is scheduled to last most of the week in U.S. District Court in Manhattan.

Rowling is scheduled to testify today in a trial that is sure to generate huge interest among Harry Potter fans and the public.

The trial comes eight months after Rowling published her seventh and final book in the Harry Potter series.

Rowling brought the lawsuit last year against Vander Ark's publisher, RDR Books, to stop publication of the "Harry Potter Lexicon."

Rowling is a fan of the Harry Potter Lexicon Web site that Vander Ark runs. But she draws the line when it comes to publishing the book and charging $24.95.

One of her attorneys, Dan Shallman, on Friday told Judge Robert P. Patterson that Rowling "feels like her words were stolen."

David Saul Hammer, an attorney for RDR Books, said the publisher will not challenge the claim that much of the material infringed Rowling's copyrights.

But the judge will decide whether the use of the material by the small Muskegon, Mich., publisher was legal because it was used for some greater purpose, such as a scholarly pursuit.

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