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‘Glass House’ reality show wins court ruling

By Scott Collins, Los Angeles Times –

LOS ANGELES — CBS tried to shutter ABC’s reality series “The Glass House,” but a federal judge Friday said that the show will go on.

Claiming the ABC series is a “Big Brother” copycat, CBS filed for a temporary restraining order in U.S. District Court in Los Angeles that would have blocked its Monday premiere.

The network had already sued ABC and “Glass House” producers claiming copyright infringement and misappropriation of trade secrets; that suit is still pending.

Both shows feature contestants interacting in a house wired with hidden cameras and microphones.

But Judge Gary Feess refused to grant CBS’ request for an injunction against “Glass House.” ABC has already promoted the show and made the first episode available to journalists online.

The judge went further, saying from the bench that he was “not persuaded” that CBS would prevail in its claims during the trial and that the premise behind “Big Brother” could not be copyrighted.

In a statement, CBS vowed to continue its fight and made clear that its real mission may be to send a message to wayward producers as much as to stop “Glass House” in particular. Many “Glass House” employees previously worked on “Big Brother.”

An ABC spokeswoman said the network would have no comment until the judge issued a written ruling.

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