Music Modernization Act: A Bill to Help Songwriters Pay Their Bills?

In the past twenty years, the state of the music industry has changed dramatically. Between 1998 and 2014, the industry was in crisis. Total revenue from U.S. music sales and licensing dropped from $15 billion to $7 billion. CD sales were on the decline, pirating was on the rise, and even when consumers purchased their music legally, they tended towards buying .99 cent singles rather than full albums. Since 2014, streaming has taken.. Read More

An Unstoppable Force Meets an Immovable Object: A Glimpse at the Emerging Effects of the DMCA’s Anti-Circumvention Provision on the Internet of Things

Next year will mark the twentieth anniversary of the passage of the Digital Millennium Copyright Act (“DMCA”), Congress’s controversial response to novel copyright protection issues posed by digital media and new technologies that facilitate piracy and other infringing activity.  Signed into law by President Clinton a mere seven months before the release of the infamous pioneering peer-to-peer file sharing platform, Napster, the DMCA presciently provided copyright owners and prosecutors with a powerful new.. Read More

Interview: Professor Fromer and the Star Athletica case

In this interview, Jeanne Fromer, professor at NYU School of Law, discusses her experience filing an amicus brief in the Star Athletica, L.L.C. v. Varsity Brands, Inc. case decided this past year. The Court ruled that the useful article doctrine did not pose a bar to Varsity Brands’ enforcement of copyright against Star Athletica in five designs of Varsity Brands’ cheerleading uniforms. Jeanne Fromer also discusses her views on and critiques of the.. Read More

Theatrical Parody in an Age of Uncertain Fair Use in the Second Circuit

Fair use doctrine has been challenged and stretched by the technological leaps and bounds of recent years. In the recent Second Circuit case, Author’s Guild v. Google, the court grappled with the issue of whether Google Books snippets were fair uses of the copyrighted works. These determinations are far beyond the scope of what is contemplated by the Section 107 of the 1976 Copyright Act, which sets forth factors courts should consider when.. Read More

COPYRIGHTABILITY OF FASHION DESIGNS: Legislative Suggestions for Taiwan’s Copyright Law

The debate over whether or not fashion designs should be protected by copyright law is in full swing in the United States. Several legislative attempts to pass a “fashion bill” to protect three-dimensional fashion designs in the United States have been launched. A similar issue in copyright law has emerged in Taiwan, where the copyright law does not protect the cut and shape of a three-dimensional fashion design, but only the pictorial and.. Read More

Teenagers throughout the world would tell you that sports video games have vastly improved over the last 20 years. Game controls have become more sophisticated, player movements have been refined, and depictions of sports venues have become infinitely more detailed. Yet, the most striking difference between the games of today and those of the mid-to-late 90’s are the depictions of the actual bodies of the players. The generic figures of early video games.. Read More

3D Printing as a Copyright Infringement

South Africa has achieved another technological milestone. The Nelson Mandela Metropolitan University’s renewable energy laboratory recently constructed one of Africa’s largest 3D printers. With the emerging market for 3D printing, there are concerns regarding the intellectual property implications of these products. “When you think about it,” Likonelo Magagula, director of Norton Rose Fulbright based in Johannesburg, said, “making an authorized copy of something can constitute either patent or copyright infringement, it matters not what.. Read More

Capitol Records, LLC v. ReDigi Inc. and the Future of Digital Resale

In 2013, the Southern District of New York decided a case, Capitol Records, LLC v. ReDigi Inc., that effectively eliminated a consumer’s ability to resell lawfully owned digital goods. Now the Second Circuit will hear the appeal, and anyone interested in a coherent future for copyright law, or an effective right to sell their goods, would do well to pay attention. ReDigi’s software provided users with an online market for buying and selling.. Read More

Artists Urging Reforms of the DMCA Safe Harbor: ‘Our Culture Is At Stake’

Last month, T Bone Burnett, a legendary musician, songwriter, and record producer, submitted a five-minute video to the U.S. Copyright Office calling for reforms in the Digital Millennium Copyright Act (DMCA) takedown-and-notice process on behalf of the Content Creators Coalition (C3) members and all music creators. In the video posted on February 21, Burnett illustrates how the current business models “designed to scrape away value rather than fuel new creation, focused on taking.. Read More

Stephanie Lenz, the Dancing Baby, and the Changing Landscape of Fair Use on YouTube

Last month marked the 10-year anniversary of the day that Stephanie Lenz uploaded a twenty-nine second clip of her one-year-old dancing to YouTube. The seemingly innocent video picked up very little steam across the web—the video was similar to any other home video, perhaps with an added dose of humor. This video would soon, however, become an international phenomenon because of a music clip playing in the background. In 2007, Universal Music Group.. Read More