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The Fox News Channel has filed suit against liberal humorist and author Al Franken and publisher Penguin Group for use of the phrase “fair and balanced” in Franken’s new book title.


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Al Franken

The suit, which was filed today in federal court in Manhattan, claims the title to Franken’s book, “Lies and the Lying Liars Who Tell Them: A Fair and Balanced Look at the Right,” violates the “Fair and Balanced” copyright trademark of the Fox News Channel, which registered the phrase in 1995, the Associated Press reported.

The suit also asks for unspecified damages and said Franken’s “intent is clear – to exploit Fox News’ trademark, confuse the public as to the origins of the book and, accordingly, boost sales of the book,” said AP.

WorldNetDaily was unable to reach officials at Fox News or Penguin Group for comment.

Franken, whose newest book is due out next month, is also known for his other works, “Rush Limbaugh is a Big Fat Idiot: And Other Observations;” “Oh, the Things I Know;” and, “Why Not Me? The Inside Story of the Making and Unmaking of the Franken Presidency.”

Franken, a former “Saturday Night Live” star, in his book lampooning Limbaugh also took swipes at conservative punditry and politics. According to Salon.com, Franken was “taking the piss out of everyone from Pat Buchanan to George Will.”

When asked why he chose Limbaugh to be part of the title of his book, Franken told Salon: “The reason I chose Limbaugh is first of all, when I made the decision, it was late ’94, right before the congressional elections.

“He was this huge power; he was being called the ‘Majority Maker.’ He was made an honorary member of the Republicans’ freshman class. They certainly deserve each other. And I listened to him, I just listened to him. And I thought, how does this guy get away with this? This guy can’t be allowed to get away with this,” Franken told the Internet-based newsmagazine.

The Penguin Group, Franken’s publisher, has primary operations in the United Kingdom, Australia, the United States and Canada. The company is owned by Pearson plc.


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