Tag Archives: fair use

Dear Doc: I’ve heard that politicians who use music at their campaign appearances and in their Internet postings (Tweets, Memes, and other stuff) need to get permission from the music artists, and that sometimes, they don’t. What happens then? Signed,Dazed and Confused   Dear D&C:The basic rule of copyright is that unless use of a […]

In 2007, Stephanie Lenz posted a cute 29-second YouTube video of her 13-month-old son dancing and giggling to the music of Prince’s “Let’s Go Crazy”. Four seconds into the video Lenz asks her baby “what do you think of the music?” And the baby bobbles up and down holding his push toy. You have to […]

Dear Doc: I know you’ve explained the legal concept of “fair use” before, but I have a question about that. Does it infringe an author’s copyright in a book to paraphrase one sentence from the book in a movie, if you give credit to the author, or is it fair use? Sincerely, Absolom Absolom,  Mississippi […]

In a recent embarrassing broadcast by KTVU television of San Francisco, the morning anchor, Tori Campbell, identified the pilots of the recent San Francisco Asiana airline crash as “Captain Sum Ting Wong,” “Wi Tu Lo,” “Ho Lee Fuk,” and “Bang Ding Ow.”   As she read the names, Campbell didn’t flinch and, even more perplexing, […]

We’ve written a lot about the “fair use” concept in the copyright context but did you know that there is also a fair use concept in trademark law? Here’s a case that illustrates the point. In 2012, the Naked Cowboy (yes, you read it correctly) of New York City fame, sued CBS for trademark infringement […]

So, do you know what an “appropriation artist” is?  It’s an artist who uses preexisting objects or images to create new works of art.  While you might guess that appropriation artists keep many a copyright lawyer employed they also sell their works for large sums of money.  Take for example, Richard Prince, perhaps, the most […]

The estate of William Faulkner is furious.  In the past month it has filed two copyright infringement lawsuits, one against Sony Picture Classics and another against Northrop Grumman Corporation and the Washington Post Company.  In the Sony case, the Faulkner Estate claims that Sony infringed Faulkner’s copyright in the famous phrase from Requiem for a […]

On May 28th, Phillies versus the Mets, ace-pitcher Cole Hamels, allowed four runs in eight innings but got out of an eighth-inning jam by making the right pitches at the right time.  But it was first baseman Ty Wigginton’s game.  He saved the day by going 3-for-3 with a double, home run, two walks, and […]