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December 27, 1991|From Times Staff and Wire Reports

Random House Ordered to Pay $4 Million: A federal judge ordered Random House Inc. to pay $4 million for copying the dust jacket of Merriam-Webster Inc.'s dictionary. The publisher of Webster's Ninth New Collegiate Dictionary had sued Random House early this year over its Webster's College Dictionary. A federal jury in October ruled that Random House did not infringe on the trademark "Webster's Collegiate." But it found that Random House copied the look of Merriam-Webster's dictionary. Both dictionaries had red covers and the word "Webster's" in white along the spine. Merriam-Webster said Judge Lawrence M. McKenna's award doubled a jury's earlier award of $1.77 million in compensation. Merriam-Webster had also previously been awarded $500,000 in punitive damages and $100,000 in costs.

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