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Making Sense of Fair Use

Monday, October 31, 2011

Copyright law can be a confusing landscape to navigate for the average media-consumer. It’s an even thornier territory for filmmakers, DJs and producers. Today on the show, we delve into the world of fair use – or, the doctrine that allows limited use of copyrighted material that you don’t own. Joining us to discuss the debate over Beyonce’s controversial new dance video, Girl Talk’s collage-sampling -- and to answer your questions, are Patricia Aufderheide, author of “Reclaiming Fair Use: How to Put Balance Back in Copyright” and the filmmaker David Van Taylor – who explains how he learned about fair use the hard way.

Clips from Beyonce's music video for the song "Countdown" inter-cut with video from Belgian choreographer Anne Teresa De Keersmaeker...

Guests:

Patricia Aufderheide and David Van Taylor

Comments [17]

ejsimmons

I have a blog and once a month will write a post about an visual artist that has inspired me. I would like to post examples of their artwork. Their given credit, its about them, would this be fair use?

Oct. 31 2011 11:43 PM

Both guest and host are revealing their incredible disregard for what it means to be an independent artist. It is hard enough to be an artist of principle, without having pop stars copying your moves EXACTLY, and giving NO CREDIT, even on an informal basis! It's not a question of money for Beyonce, she and her producers have more than enough to pay for royalties - it has everything to do with STEALING the blood, sweat, and tears of underpaid artists, and claiming that she thought of this herself! HOW COULD ONE BE SO CALLOUS?! And dear God, Keersmaeker is still alive, just barely 50, WHY NOT send an email, saying, "thanks, you're an inspiration to me"? I have often responded to Soundcheck with embarrassment, but seldom have I responded with such immediate disgust. PLEASE don't ever invite Aufderheide back ever again, or I might have to lodge an ant-Soundcheck campaign at OWS!!!!!

Oct. 31 2011 10:32 PM
barent

so i guess, elvis presley, must have been the "rudest" of all. talk about shameless, "appropriation", of black culture and music.

Oct. 31 2011 08:38 PM
Martin from NYC

Your guest talks about "fair use rights." Most copyright lawyers, for both rights owners and users, will advise that fair use is a defense to an infringement suit, it is not an affirmative right. Although, maybe it should be.

Oct. 31 2011 02:38 PM
Barbara from Midtown

The Beatles comment is surely questionable. Presently Yoko Ono wont allow Sesame Street to publish or release Sesame versions of Beatles songs.

Oct. 31 2011 02:36 PM
Alexa E. from New York

I think it's important to clarify that "Fair Use" is not a type of use, nor is it a right, rather it is a defense to an allegation of copyright infringement.

Oct. 31 2011 02:36 PM
Martin Novar from NYC

Your guest talks about "fair use rights." Most copyright lawyers, for both rights owners and users, will advise that fair use is a defense to an infringement suit, it is not an affirmative right. Although, maybe it should be.

Oct. 31 2011 02:35 PM
Edward from NJ

Blurred logos on hats and t-shirts on TV shows: Really necessary?

Oct. 31 2011 02:34 PM
Bob from Neptune, NJ

In an interview "Weird" Al explained that he always asks permission and always pays royalties.

Oct. 31 2011 02:33 PM
Karen from manhattan

re fair use:
What about in a movie about a woman with super short term memory (less than 5 minutes) a scene where she's miraculously having another birthday and the song "Happy Birthday" is sung. Is using that song a fair use, or do royalties have to be paid?

Oct. 31 2011 02:30 PM
Karen from manhattan

re fair use:
What about in a movie about a woman with super short term memory (less than 5 minutes) a scene where she's miraculously having another birthday and the song "Happy Birthday" is sung. Is using that song a fair use, or do royalties have to be paid?

Oct. 31 2011 02:28 PM
andy from brooklyn

when does a remix constitute fair use?

Oct. 31 2011 02:23 PM

If a powerful group wants to, can they tie up a work in the courts in order to keep it off the airwaves for a while? My example is a youtube cartoon Im working on that will use real people voice & words (Speaker Boener for example) to make a strong political statement)

Oct. 31 2011 02:20 PM
Gary from Upper Left Side

"The Copyright Act" should have been named "The Lawyers Eternal Employment Act".

Oct. 31 2011 02:18 PM
Carol

Here we go.. more stories in the media down playing copyright law. It's not about culture.. it's about artists making a living. This woman's an idiot. There are very clear rules for 'fairuse".

And the host's snarkiness on the topic is pathetic.

Oct. 31 2011 02:14 PM
Mike from Manhattan

Isn't the extension of copyright in large part due to the political influence of Disney Corp., which lobbies to keep Mickey Mouse and other classic Disney characters copyrighted, which were copyrighted in the late 1920s and 1930s and should have gone public domain long ago?

Oct. 31 2011 02:14 PM
DH Bennett from chelsea

When I have as many lawyers as Beyonce, I'll delved into "Fair Use". Until then I'm going to avoid the Cease and Desist orders...

Oct. 31 2011 02:10 PM

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