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.
What’s your definition of the “public interest” when it comes to law and lawmaking? Is it a unitary concept, where we consider the good of society as a whole? If so, you might think that the public’s interest is in a “public interest” which encompasses “cross-cutting issues” that transcend narrow considerations and allows debate about and among competing interests. On the other hand, do you view the “public interest” more narrowly? If so, you might view the public’s interest as served by placing “public interest” in a box separate from other interests, like environmental, labor or intel
Imagine if the inventor of the Segway claimed to own "any thing that moves in response to human commands." Or if the inventor of the telegraph applied for a patent covering any use of electric current for communication. Absurdly overbroad claims like these would not be allowed, right? Unfortunately, the Patent Office does not do a good job of policing overly broad claims. August's Stupid Patent of the Month, U.S. Patent No.
Former Panamanian strongman Manuel Noriega and actress Lindsay Lohan have at least one thing in common: Both recently filed high-profile lawsuits against video game makers, charging that their likenesses were used in games without their permission.
These suits may seem like acts of desperation by people now more notorious than famous, and a judge has already ruled against Noriega. But they are nevertheless extremely worrying.
We filed an amicus brief on behalf of the Electronic Frontier Foundation asking the First Circuit to affirm the district court’s reduced damages award in Sony v. Tenenbaum, a file-sharing case in which a jury originally ordered a college student to pay $675,000 for infringing copyright in 30 songs.
We filed an amicus brief in the Third Circuit on behalf of Brave New Films urging affirmance of the district court’s finding of fair use and rejection of plaintiff’s DMCA claims.
We filed an amicus brief in the Fourth Circuit in support of the Baltimore Ravens and the NFL urging the Fourth Circuit to grant rehearing or rehearing en banc, after a divided panel ruled that the Raven’s incidental use of a copyrighted logo in historical game films was not a fair use.
We defended a documentary filmmaker who was sued for copyright infringement for clips appearing in his documentary about Count Dante, an enigmatic, Chicago martial arts legend.
""That would be the understanding the majority of law professors would advocate for," suggested Prof Andrea Matwyshyn from Northwestern University in Boston.
She said while design of, say, a carpet could be considered the be-all-and-end-all of its success, a smartphone is a far more complex device. Design is important, but not the only factor.
The fact that Apple is pushing for full damages is a strategy that suggests extreme confidence in its ability to stay ahead of the curve in technology, Prof Matwyshyn said.
"Ben Depoorter, a professor at UC Hastings College of the Law who is an expert in copyright law, says this is typical of entertainment companies that worry about alienating potential buyers by having their performers associated with politics. Exhibit A is the country group the Dixie Chicks, who criticized then-President George W. Bush on stage in 2003 and faced a backlash that nearly ended their careers.
"That trend is likely to continue, said Annemarie Bridy, a University of Idaho law professor and expert in intellectual property and technology law. "Information is very valuable, and as more and more of the value in our economy is attributable to information and intellectual property, you would expect the control of that information to become more and more contested," Bridy said."
"EFF Staff Attorney Daniel Nazer said that the ruling was unsurprising, but pointed out that the decision does not give free reign to judges to issue pumped-up awards.
"EFF is glad to see that the Court emphasized that enhanced damages should still be reserved for the most egregious cases," Nazer told The Register.
"We agree with the concurrence that district courts should be cautious not to impose enhanced damages too often, especially where non-practicing entities send threat letters out to numerous small businesses.""
Join us for an evening conversation with CIS Executive Director of the Fair Use Project Anthony Falzone and Congressman Darrell Issa where they will discuss topics about SOPA, PIPA and internet freedom.
Hosted by the Federalist Society. More info about this event.
Anthony Falzone and Mark Schultz will debate whether significant developments in U.S. copyright law work to protect or violate individual freedom. Professor Paul Goldstein will moderate. Mr. Flazone is the Executive Director of the Fair Use Project with SLS's Center for Internet and Society. Mr. Schultz is a professor of law at Southern Illinois University School of Law, and his research focuses on the intersection of copyright and social norms.
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.”
CIS Affiliate Scholar David Levine interviews Prof. Andrea Matwyshyn of Northeastern University Law School, on the Digital Millennium Copyright Act (DMCA) and the Volkswagen fraud scandal.
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.