Medley madness

I spent time with my wife this evening looking at Carol Burnett skits on YouTube. It was great to see some of this old stuff I haven't seen since my youth. Unfortunately these days I cannot look at anything without wondering about the copyright implications. It is a curse.

While looking at this Medley of 70's and 80's music done brilliantly by Carol Burnett and Julie Andrews, I wondered just how much legal work was required to put this together. Did they need to get clearances from the creators of all the work they used? Did they need to pay exorbitant royalties that few others might be able to afford?

I would think that American Fair Use provisions would protect the Medley creator. Looking on Google for information on Medleys and copyright turned up very little however. If the Mix DJ artists are any indication, what Carol Burnett was able to do would certainly be difficult for almost anyone else.

Changing our copyright laws to define these sorts of mashups as clear 'fair use/dealings' would be highly desirable in any copyright reform.

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Assumption of constraint

You seem to be assuming that the law constrains both artists and the public.

I've never come across a case where an artist has been prosecuted for CREATING an unauthorised derivative.

What happens now is that the artists enjoy their freedom of expression and leave the key infringement (performance/distribution of unauthorised copies/derivatives) to the public, their audience.

Remember that copyright was intended to constrain commercial publishers, and despite being worded to constrain each and every one of us, it can only really hope to constrain commercial publishers.

What we're left with are commercial publishers who've been made redundant by the instantaneous diffusion mechanism also known as The Internet, and their despicable attempts to use a law intended for the likes of themselves against the citizenry.

Copyright is over.

All that remains to us is the task of removing this anachronism from the statute books.

It's not over yet.

"I've never come across a case where an artist has been prosecuted for CREATING an unauthorised derivative."

check out my website, Death By Copyright. It is loaded with many such instances.

"What happens now is that the artists enjoy their freedom of expression and leave the key infringement (performance/distribution of unauthorised copies/derivatives) to the public, their audience."

This is not true. Even on the Internet, which is probably the medium you are tinking about, it is the artist who has to upload it to the P2P network or post it on Youtube.

"Remember that copyright was intended to constrain commercial publishers, and despite being worded to constrain each and every one of us, it can only really hope to constrain commercial publishers."

What you say of its original intention is true. In fact of you go back to before the Statute of Anne you'll find that copyright was in fact a tool for censorship. Alas, as you can see on my website or at chillingeffects.org or at illegal-art.org, is that copyright is being used with great effect against non-commercial uses.

CREATING

Please give me a link to what you consider to be the clearest example of an artist being prosecuted for the CREATION of an unauthorised derivative.

I don't know how to emphasise it any more strongly, but I'm not talking about being prosecuted for the publication or distribution of an infringing work, but for the creation of an infringing work.

Ta. :)

Playing with words.

I believe you are playing with words. Darryl Moore legitimately assumed that you were talking about Copyright related issues. Whether or not "creation" is one of those things regulated by copyright, many of the logical things people would want to do with that creation are regulated by copyright (produce or reproduce, perform, etc).

Of course, whether "creation" and "produce" is the same thing is a debate, but is it an interesting debate in this context?

Why strongly focus on the word 'create' at all? Does that serve a purpose?


Free/Libre and Open Source Software (FLOSS) consultant.