Stephen Breyer

Justices side with leading cheerleading uniform maker

The Supreme Court on Wednesday sided with the leading maker of cheerleading uniforms in a copyright dispute with a smaller rival, ruling that uniform designs can be protected under copyright law.

The justices ruled 6-2 on Wednesday to uphold a lower court ruling in favor of Varsity Brands in its copyright infringement lawsuit against Star Athletica.

Varsity sued its competitor based on Star's 2010 catalog that used stripes, chevrons and other designs that Varsity claimed as its own.

In his majority opinion, Justice Clarence Thomas said artistic features on clothing deserve protection under copyright law if they can be separated from the article of clothing and would...