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Thread started 08/21/08 2:59pm

carlcranshaw

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Judge rules against Prince/Uni - Fair Use

Music industry can't force Web removal of song excerpts, judge rules

Bob Egelko, Chronicle Staff Writer

Wednesday, August 20, 2008

(08-20) 19:58 PDT San Jose -- In a victory for small-time music copiers over the entertainment industry, a federal judge ruled today that copyright-holders can't order one of their songs removed from the Web without first checking to see if the excerpt was so small and innocuous that it was legal.
More Bay Area News

The ruling by U.S. District Judge Jeremy Fogel of San Jose was the first in the nation to require the owner of the rights to a creative work to consider whether an on-line copy was a "fair use" - a small or insignificant replication that couldn't have affected the market for the original - before ordering the Web host to take it down.

A 1998 federal law authorized copyright-holders to issue takedown orders whenever they see an unauthorized version of their work on the Internet, without having to sue and prove a case of infringement. Some advocates of Internet users' rights - including the Electronic Frontier Foundation, which represented the individual user in this case - contend the procedure has been abused.

The case dates from February 2007, when Stephanie Lenz, a writer and editor from Gallitzin, Pa., made a video of her 13-month-old son cavorting to Prince's song "Let's Go Crazy" and posted the 29-second clip on YouTube.

Four months later, Universal Music Corp., which owns the rights to the song, ordered YouTube to remove the video and nearly 200 others involving Prince compositions. Lenz, exercising her rights under the same 1998 law, notified YouTube several weeks later that her video was legal and ordered it restored. YouTube complied after waiting two weeks, as required by law, to see whether Universal would sue Lenz for infringement.

Lenz then sued Universal in Northern California, YouTube's home district, for her costs, claiming the music company had acted in bad faith by ordering removal of a video that - she contended - was obviously a fair use of the song, with no commercial value.

Universal denied her claim and argued that the 1998 law doesn't require copyright-holders to decide whether a copied work is a fair use before ordering it taken down. Fair use is never obvious, the company argued, and the inquiry would be so cumbersome and time-consuming that it would thwart the purpose of the law authorizing takedowns.

But Fogel noted today that the law defines a fair-use copy as legal and said the copyright-holder, who has to examine the Web posting to make sure it's an unauthorized duplicate, must also consider whether the excerpt was too innocuous to matter commercially.

In most cases, the judge said, that inquiry "will not be so complicated as to jeopardize a copyright owner's ability to respond rapidly to potential infringements." The law is intended "to prevent the abuse of takedown notices," he said.

Fogel, who will next consider whether Universal's takedown order was legal, said he's allowing the case to continue even though he has "considerable doubt" that Lenz can prove the company acted in bad faith.

Universal spokesman Peter Lofrumento told the Associated Press that the company remains "confident that we will prevail in this matter."
‎"The first time I saw the cover of Dirty Mind in the early 80s I thought, 'Is this some drag queen ripping on Freddie Prinze?'" - Some guy on The Gear Page
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Reply #1 posted 08/21/08 3:07pm

DesireeNevermi
nd

WOW - Thanks for posting.
So in a nutshell, does this mean Prince postings can remain on the web unless he actually reviews the length of each posting and determines an infringement has occurred? e.g. "When Doves Cry" at 30 secs is okay but after that it's gettin' the boot?
Damn i shoulda went to law school! sad
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Reply #2 posted 08/21/08 5:34pm

SoulAlive

I saw this on the local news last night.
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Reply #3 posted 08/21/08 5:51pm

meow85

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woot!


I'm thrilled at this news. Much as a Prince fan as I am, I've been getting tired of some his behaviour lately. Good to see him knocked down a peg. It's not healthy to believe he can behave like a spoiled prince just because it's his name.
"A Watcher scoffs at gravity!"
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Reply #4 posted 08/21/08 6:23pm

Dayclear

Knocked down 2 pegs, he lost the Creep/Radiohead thing too remember? nod
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Reply #5 posted 08/21/08 6:25pm

Twinkly1

Change of Venue.
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Reply #6 posted 08/21/08 6:29pm

luv4u

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This could be a great legal precedent cool
Edmonton, AB - canada
Mod Goddess of the SNIP & BAN Making Moves - OF4S
Ohh purple joy oh purple bliss oh purple rapture!
REAL MUSIC by REAL MUSICIANS - Prince
"I kind of wish there was a reason for Prince to make the site crash more" ~~ Ben
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Reply #7 posted 08/21/08 6:32pm

Tame

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If there were as many constitutional rights that protected "rights of respect," based on moral responsibilities to abide by rules that affect people emotionally as well as they protect bodily harm...Prince could find the red-tape faster than she could.

The Laws all seem to have some kind of loop hole that a dollar can get through somewhere....It's a shame.

And on behalf of gossip of any kind...If the person being talked about, doesn't want the world to know...look at the lawyers job then. Some things do hurt people emotionally for life, which is a lot longer than the healing of someone physically.

Insensitivity. Money. Poverty. Defending Integrity. Power Struggles. Overdone Sex.
Is the world destined to kill romance? I pray not.
"The Lion Sleeps Tonight...
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Reply #8 posted 08/21/08 9:01pm

DesireeNevermi
nd

Tame said:

If there were as many constitutional rights that protected "rights of respect," based on moral responsibilities to abide by rules that affect people emotionally as well as they protect bodily harm...Prince could find the red-tape faster than she could.

The Laws all seem to have some kind of loop hole that a dollar can get through somewhere....It's a shame.

And on behalf of gossip of any kind...If the person being talked about, doesn't want the world to know...look at the lawyers job then. Some things do hurt people emotionally for life, which is a lot longer than the healing of someone physically.

Insensitivity. Money. Poverty. Defending Integrity. Power Struggles. Overdone Sex.
Is the world destined to kill romance? I pray not.


DAMN U JUST MADE ME SAD WITH THAT ONE sad
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Reply #9 posted 08/21/08 10:28pm

ZoPo5

That's really a shame. I hope his lawyers sharpen their claws and find a way to get at people playing with his material like this.
If this is wrong, then I long 2 be as far from right as I may.
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Reply #10 posted 08/21/08 10:34pm

meow85

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Dayclear said:

Knocked down 2 pegs, he lost the Creep/Radiohead thing too remember? nod

eek Really? I did not know that.


Well, good. smile
"A Watcher scoffs at gravity!"
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Reply #11 posted 08/21/08 11:31pm

Snap

Just because Prince is behind it doesn't make it right. "Fair use" is part of our 1st Amendment rights, Americans. Some of you would rewrite the Constitution if ya had half a chance. Next you'll be throwing out the 10 Commandments.
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Reply #12 posted 08/22/08 12:36am

SoulAlive

meow85 said:

woot!I'm thrilled at this news. Much as a Prince fan as I am, I've been getting tired of some his behaviour lately. Good to see him knocked down a peg. It's not healthy to believe he can behave like a spoiled prince just because it's his name.


I agree nod
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Reply #13 posted 08/22/08 1:14am

meow85

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SoulAlive said:

meow85 said:

woot!I'm thrilled at this news. Much as a Prince fan as I am, I've been getting tired of some his behaviour lately. Good to see him knocked down a peg. It's not healthy to believe he can behave like a spoiled prince just because it's his name.


I agree nod

I mean, the guy does have certain rights of say over what is and isn't done with his music. But not only do those rights obviously not extend as far as he's been throwing them, but even if stuff like the dancing baby video was within his rights to remove, it's just a dick move.
"A Watcher scoffs at gravity!"
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Reply #14 posted 08/22/08 1:37am

notaprintztype

Goody goody.
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Reply #15 posted 08/22/08 1:45am

SoulAlive

meow85 said:

SoulAlive said:



I agree nod

I mean, the guy does have certain rights of say over what is and isn't done with his music. But not only do those rights obviously not extend as far as he's been throwing them, but even if stuff like the dancing baby video was within his rights to remove, it's just a dick move.


nod
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Reply #16 posted 08/22/08 2:56pm

DerekH

meow85 said:

SoulAlive said:



I agree nod

I mean, the guy does have certain rights of say over what is and isn't done with his music. But not only do those rights obviously not extend as far as he's been throwing them, but even if stuff like the dancing baby video was within his rights to remove, it's just a dick move.


So, is it Prince himself taking these videos off Youtube or is it Universal doing it?
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Reply #17 posted 08/22/08 9:24pm

meow85

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DerekH said:

meow85 said:


I mean, the guy does have certain rights of say over what is and isn't done with his music. But not only do those rights obviously not extend as far as he's been throwing them, but even if stuff like the dancing baby video was within his rights to remove, it's just a dick move.


So, is it Prince himself taking these videos off Youtube or is it Universal doing it?

My understanding is that it's been Universal removing them at the request of Prince and his legalios.
"A Watcher scoffs at gravity!"
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Reply #18 posted 08/23/08 4:59am

Marrk

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Good. He was getting ridiculous about this in the true sense of the word.
Yeah, we'll, we'll try to imagine what silence looks like.
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Reply #19 posted 08/24/08 3:12pm

meow85

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Marrk said:

Good. He was getting ridiculous about this in the true sense of the word.

nod
"A Watcher scoffs at gravity!"
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Reply #20 posted 08/24/08 4:26pm

laurarichardso
n

meow85 said:

Marrk said:

Good. He was getting ridiculous about this in the true sense of the word.

nod

-----
"allowing the case to continue even though he has "considerable doubt" that Lenz can prove the company acted in bad faith."

It appears that this ruling allows the case to move forward but I still think this chick is going to lose and I still can't figure out why she thinks she has a right to use the music in her video. eek
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Reply #21 posted 08/24/08 6:38pm

wonder505

laurarichardson said:

meow85 said:


nod

-----
"allowing the case to continue even though he has "considerable doubt" that Lenz can prove the company acted in bad faith."

It appears that this ruling allows the case to move forward but I still think this chick is going to lose and I still can't figure out why she thinks she has a right to use the music in her video. eek


i don't think its about her right to use his music, it was a short home video showcasing the cuteness of her baby dancing. it was innocent on her part. even though he is entitle to control his music, sending out some of the notices was overkill. some include amateur videos which are innocent and positive and nothing more than a fan's expression of his/her admiration for the song, yet those videos get silenced. I will always be a fan of his music, yall know i'm always for him on alot of these discussions, but its a little disheartening that Prince has to be the one caught up in this mess. i'm sure when he decides to finally speak publically on this, perhaps i can understand his true reasoning, but from an outsider trying to read his mind, i'm out of justification on some of the videos. anyway, that' my two cents on the matter.just wish we could revert back to the good times like during musicology where he had an official site, videos were up and running and everyone is having fun, instead talking about ceast and desist orders and youtube.. i'm sure it will be that way again, as we are all anxiously waiting for news on what's next.. cool
[Edited 8/24/08 18:50pm]
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Reply #22 posted 08/25/08 12:01am

meow85

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wonder505 said:

laurarichardson said:


-----
"allowing the case to continue even though he has "considerable doubt" that Lenz can prove the company acted in bad faith."

It appears that this ruling allows the case to move forward but I still think this chick is going to lose and I still can't figure out why she thinks she has a right to use the music in her video. eek


i don't think its about her right to use his music, it was a short home video showcasing the cuteness of her baby dancing. it was innocent on her part. even though he is entitle to control his music, sending out some of the notices was overkill. some include amateur videos which are innocent and positive and nothing more than a fan's expression of his/her admiration for the song, yet those videos get silenced. I will always be a fan of his music, yall know i'm always for him on alot of these discussions, but its a little disheartening that Prince has to be the one caught up in this mess. i'm sure when he decides to finally speak publically on this, perhaps i can understand his true reasoning, but from an outsider trying to read his mind, i'm out of justification on some of the videos. anyway, that' my two cents on the matter.just wish we could revert back to the good times like during musicology where he had an official site, videos were up and running and everyone is having fun, instead talking about ceast and desist orders and youtube.. i'm sure it will be that way again, as we are all anxiously waiting for news on what's next.. cool
[Edited 8/24/08 18:50pm]



nod It's kind of a bitch time to be a Prince fan right now. No proper official website, no direct source for news, no avenue for one-off singles or internet releases, no means of watching music videos or live performances even in a pay system, and nary a word from The Lil Man about what's going on. Just a bunch of "gimme it! it's mine!" cease and desist orders.

If only he'd do a press conference or issue a release or something to let us know what's up, because right now it just comes off as P being a jerk. sigh
"A Watcher scoffs at gravity!"
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Reply #23 posted 08/25/08 12:17am

mydrawers

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carlcranshaw said:



The case dates from February 2007, when Stephanie Lenz, a writer and editor from Gallitzin, Pa., made a video of her 13-month-old son cavorting to Prince's song "Let's Go Crazy" and posted the 29-second clip on YouTube.



Another 'proud parent' trying to convince an uncaring online world their little "bids for immortality" are cute.

flipped off flipped off flipped off flipped off
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Reply #24 posted 08/25/08 10:48pm

June7

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Either way... this just makes Prince look more and more like an ass... and this from a guy who loves him. confused
[PRINCE 4EVER!]

[June7, "ModGod"]
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Reply #25 posted 08/25/08 11:18pm

mydrawers

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June7 said:

Either way... this just makes Prince look more and more like an ass... and this from a guy who loves him. confused


Nah, it was nice to see a breeder knocked down a few pegs biggrin

Good work, Prince!
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Reply #26 posted 08/25/08 11:21pm

Desire2006

So, what does this mean for the dentist guy????? lol lol
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Reply #27 posted 08/25/08 11:31pm

dumbass

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mydrawers said:

carlcranshaw said:



The case dates from February 2007, when Stephanie Lenz, a writer and editor from Gallitzin, Pa., made a video of her 13-month-old son cavorting to Prince's song "Let's Go Crazy" and posted the 29-second clip on YouTube.



Another 'proud parent' trying to convince an uncaring online world their little "bids for immortality" are cute.

flipped off flipped off flipped off flipped off

I don't know what you should be more embarrassed of, your ignorance or your obvious jealousy.
this message brought to you by logic.
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Reply #28 posted 08/26/08 2:08am

G0d

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ZoPo5 said:

That's really a shame. I hope his lawyers sharpen their claws and find a way to get at people playing with his material like this.


Co-sign.
"LOVE YOURSELF AS ALL PEOPLE"
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Reply #29 posted 08/26/08 2:18am

pplrain

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I'm going to use some of his songs for a fashion show and I don't know if it falls under fair use. I would think it does, I have never heard of an artist suing a designer for use of his songs in a fashion show. However you never know with Prince. confused

I have asked for permission and have not received any response. If I don't receive a reply I might just change the songs to other artists. I really don't want a hassle and my business is too young for a lawsuit.
[Edited 8/26/08 2:24am]
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