J.K. Rowling, author of the Harry Potter book series, makes a statement before leaving the U.S. District Court in New York April 14, 2008. Rowling said on Monday she had stopped working on a new novel because her creativity was stifled by a fan's bid to print an unofficial encyclopedic companion to her Harry Potter series. The 42-year-old British author and Warner Bros. are suing independent U.S. publisher RDR Books, which plans to publish "The Harry Potter Lexicon," a 400-page reference book written by Steve Vander Ark and based on his popular fan Web site.(Xinhua/Reuters Photo)
J.K. Rowling lashed out in a New York court Wednesday as her lawsuit to halt the publication of unauthorized "Harry Potter" encyclopedia came to a close, media reported.
Rowling, 42, told the court that publishing it would clear the way for other rip-offs of the Potter series. "This case is about an author's right to protect their creation," she said. "If this book is allowed to be published the floodgates will open."
Rowling and Warner Bros., which owns the copyright to the Potter books, are suing the publisher, RDR Publishing, to stop the release of "Harry Potter Lexicon" written by Steve Vander Ark.
On Wednesday, U.S. District Judge Robert Patterson Jr. said Rowling and the publisher should try to settle the copyright dispute out of court.
He said the copyright infringement case was a legal close call, involving unresolved areas of American law, and was almost certain to end in years of appeals.
So far, the trial has featured two days of emotional testimony, first by Rowling, then by Vander Ark, a former middle school librarian.
On Tuesday, Vander Ark, 50, broke down in tears with Rowling sitting directly in front of him, when asked whether he still feels part of the Harry Potter fan community.
"I do," he said, trembling with tears and struggling to continue speaking. "It's been difficult because there's been a lot of criticism, obviously, but ... it has been an important part of my life for the last nine years or so."
A spokesperson for Rowling and Warner Bros. Entertainment issued a statement Tuesday after Vander Ark's statement, which said, "a fan's affectionate enthusiasm should not obscure the acts of plagiarism."
(Xinhua News Agency/Agencies April 17,2008)