Tony Falzone is the Deputy General Counsel at Pinterest, Inc.
The Center for Internet and Society at Stanford Law School is a leader in the study of the law and policy around the Internet and other emerging technologies.
A healthy copyright system must balance the need to provide strong economic incentives through exclusive rights with the need to protect important public interests like free speech and expression. Fair use is foundational to that balance. It's role is to prevent copyright from stifling the creativity it is supposed to foster, and from imposing other burdens that would inhibit rather than promote the creation and spread of knowledge and learning.
The Fair Use Project (FUP) was founded in 2006 to provide legal support to a range of projects designed to clarify, and extend, the boundaries of fair use in order to enhance creative freedom and protect important public rights. It is the only organization in the country dedicated specifically to providing free and comprehensive legal representation to authors, filmmakers, artists, musicians and other content creators who face unmerited copyright claims, or other improper restrictions on their expressive interests. The FUP has litigated important cases across the country, and in the Supreme Court of the United States, and worked with scores of filmmakers and other content creators to secure the unimpeded release of their work.
Tony Falzone is the Deputy General Counsel at Pinterest, Inc.
Brett Frischmann’s expertise is in intellectual property and internet law. After clerking for the Honorable Fred I. Parker of the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Second Circuit and practicing at Wilmer, Cutler & Pickering in Washington, DC, he joined the Loyola University Chicago law faculty in 2002. He has held visiting appointments at Cornell and Fordham.
Lauren is an experienced attorney, frequent speaker and start-up advisor who has worked in the field of Internet law and policy since 1995. She is the founder of BlurryEdge Strategies, a legal and strategy consulting firm located in San Francisco that advises technology companies and investors on cutting-edge legal issues.
I attended a really fun reception last night at the fancy Hotel Vitale in San Francisco hosted by Harvard Law School's Berkman Center. One of the co-hosts was Pam Samuelson, that amazing law and technology professor at UC Berkeley whose work and writings are extremely important in the field of IP and internet rights.
During the reception, Pam was asked to tell us about the most exciting thing she's working on these days. Her answer explained that she'll be heading over to be a visiting professor at Harvard next year (which makes me a tiny bit sad because it means she won't be so close to us here in the Bay Area and I have this little irrational fear she may not come back - gasp!), and that her big project for the next 5 years is to fix the copyright act. Yes, that's right, Pam Samuelson's going to take on the the 200-plus page behemoth, which is filled with special interest carve outs, archane and sometimes seriously confusing language, and -- not unlike the tax code -- is simply unwieldy for something that so greatly impacts our rights to share knowledge, build culture, create beautiful art and astounding new technologies, and (simply) speak freely.
I think her project simultaneous fantastic and so needed on the one hand, and somewhat impossible on the other! And for that, I love that she's taking it on. We should give our support to Pam and this project, and pay close attention to how the parties who stand to gain/lose from changes get involved. Many voices in the debate will, I hope, lead to great results and powerful changes in our copyright laws.
First it was "Rip! Mix! and Burn!" Now it is simply just "Burn!"
It is the second time in a few weeks when an artist is caught "red-handed" using, remixing, appropriating another artist's work. Last December Shepard Fairey aka Obey was blamed for borrowing an image from the public domain, now rapper Timbaland is caught "stealing" from another artist.
Some sad news to report: the 9th Circuit has rejected constitutional challenges to the copyright laws in *Kahle v. Gonzales*. The opinion is here. Sad, yes, but also positively maddening, for reasons I will explain shortly.
For those of you who are interested in domain names issues I have made this piece available on my SSRN page. It addresses the interface between registration of domain names and trademark rights, provides technical and historical background to domain names disputes and moves to focus on particular matters of interest, e.g., regulation in the U.S. and via ICANN, conflict of laws, international aspects, potential abuse of regulatory mechanisms, litigation strategies and freedom of speech issues.
It is now received wisdom that a properly functioning democracy requires transparency and accountability — information shared with the public that allows the public to know what its government is doing. It is equally uncontroversial to say that social media allows for an unprecedented amount of informal but structured dissemination and analysis of information. Despite these two basic points, U.S. freedom of information law has failed to harness the power of these new social media networks and, more importantly, formats in a way that amplifies public knowledge of government information.
This is the third in a series of articles focusing on the experimental economics of intellectual property. In earlier work, we have experimentally studied the ways in which creators assign monetary value to the things that they create. That research has suggested that creators are subject to a systematic bias that leads them to overvalue their work.
Letter to Congress explaining that proposed copyright legislation would violate the First Amendment and be struck down in court.
Sarah Morris is a well-known multimedia artist and filmmaker. In 2007, she debuted her "Origami" series, 24 paintings in which she reworked, redesigned, and reshaped origami crease patterns on canvas. Several origami artists sued Morris for copyright infringement, arguing Morris had unduly appropriated their allegedly copyrightable origami crease patterns in developing the "Origami" series. The Fair Use Project teamed up with attorneys Bob Clarida and Donn Zaretsky to defend Morris. We briefed the fair use issues on summary judgment.
Meltwater News ("Meltwater") is a search engine and research tool that allows users to search for and obtain information about news items that have been made publicly available on the Internet.
We filed an amicus brief in the Second Circuit on behalf of The Andy Warhol Foundation for the Visual Arts urging the appeals court to reverse a district court decision that ignored established fair use principles that many artists rely upon in creating their work.
The FUP filed this suit on behalf of a University of Denver conductor and others, challenging Congress’s restoration of copyright to works that had entered the public domain.
"Daniel Nazer, the Mark Cuban Chair to Eliminate Stupid Patents at the Electronic Frontier Foundation, a high-tech civil liberties group, is amused by Reben's project — but he's not so sure it's going to help.
"The patent office looks for prior art when they review patents," he says, "but they tend to look in pretty narrow domains like published technical journals. ... Part of our work is to try and get the patent office to look more broadly.""
"“The VENUE Act would make it harder for companies to file a suit in districts that don’t have meaningful connection to the suit,” Daniel Nazer, staff attorney with the Electronic Frontier Foundation and Mark Cuban Chair to Eliminate Stupid Patents, told the Southeast Texas Record. “This bill is really about making sure disputes are filed somewhere that makes sense.”"
"Cooke's order binding the domain registrars, who were not parties to the case, claims authority to do so based on the All Writs Act—the same short law that's now part of the national debate over a court order issued to Apple in a high-profile terrorism case.
"Daniel Nazer, a staff attorney at the Electronic Frontier Foundation who holds the delightfully titled Mark Cuban Chair to Eliminate Stupid Patents, had cautious praise for LOT.
“It’s a targeted program that’s good for limiting the supply of patents to the very worst actors who use litigation to shake down people for settlements,” he said. “But it doesn’t stop problems with patent quality and with operating companies attacking each other.”
For more information visit: http://isp.yale.edu/event/innovation-law-beyond-ip-2
Saturday March 28th featuring CIS Non-Residential Fellow Yana Welinder
Creative Production Without IP
Kevin Collins – Architectural Innovation Before the AWCPA
Lea Shaver – Publishing Without Property: Commons-Based Social Publishing and Its Implications for Educational and Book Policy
The American Bar Association White Collar Crime Committee Presents:
The Internet’s Own Boy: A Discussion Of U.S. v. Aaron Swartz And The Prosecution And Defense Of Cyber-Crime
Featuring Brian KNAPPENBERGER, Filmmaker And Director Of The Internet’s Own Boy, Jennifer GRANICK, Director Of Civil Liberties For The Center For Internet And Society At Stanford Law School, And More.
To register please visit the Bar Association of San Francisco's website.
IP BYTES: Hot Topics in Copyright Law
The 16th Annual Federalist Society Faculty Conference will be held on January 3-4, 2014 in New York City. The purpose of our Annual Faculty Conferences is to provide an opportunity for those interested in the Society to share ideas and scholarship with each other.
The song “Happy Birthday” has a long, litigious history dating back to the 1930s. Every year, people spent millions in royalties to use the song, until a class action lawsuit was brought challenging whether the owner, Warner/Chappell Music, actually owned the copyright it so aggressively enforced. Elizabeth Townsend-Gard, Tulane School of Law professor specializing in copyright law, discusses the case of “Happy Birthday.”
Read or listen to the full interview at NPR.
NPR's Audie Cornish talks to Daniel Nazer of the Electronic Frontier Foundation about the impact of this ruling. An appeals court ruled the music used in the video was an instance of fair use.
AUDIE CORNISH, HOST:
When Stephanie Lenz saw her toddler jamming out in the kitchen to the Prince song "Let's Go Crazy," naturally she took a video and posted it to YouTube.
CIS Affiliate Scholar David Levine interviews Pedro Roffe of the International Centre for Trade and Sustainable Development and Prof. Xavier Seuba of the University of Strasbourg, co-editors of ACTA and the Plurilateral Enforcement Agenda.
CIS Affiliate Scholar David Levine interviews Elizabeth Townsend Gard of Tulane University Law School and Ron Gard of Limited Times LLC, on The Durationator, an online tool to determine whether any work of authorship is covered by copyright, and social entrepreneurship.