Da Vinci Code Copyright Case

To lighten the tone of this week’s serious theme, I give you Justice Peter Smith’s trial reasons in the Da Vinci Code copyright case, aka Baigant and Leigh v. Random House Group Limited.

Just to add to the spicy controversy that seems to follow this popular (but only slightly entertaining and definitely non-literary) book, blogger Ashby Jones (WSJ) posits that the judge imbedded his own code into his judgment. Here’s part of his post for your own entertainment:

He just couldn’t resist, could he? Justice Peter Smith, the judge who presided over the recent “Da Vinci Code” copyright infringement trial in London reportedly has stuck his own code into his ruling, according to a Reuters story appearing today.

According to the story, lawyer Dan Tench noticed that some letters in the judgment had been italicized, and that, taken together, they spelled out a phrase that included the judge’s name: “Smith code.’’ Tench initially told The Times of London newspaper about it, which prompted an email from the judge, instructing him to look at some early paragraphs. Italicized letters scattered throughout the opinion reportedly spell out: “smithcodeJaeiextostpsacgreamqwfkadpmqz.’’