Monday, January 26, 2009

Marvel sued for $750M in movie profits

NEW YORK -- Shareholders of an ill-fated Stan Lee venture are seeking more than $750 million in profits from films and other works based on Marvel comic characters such as "Spider-Man," "X-Men" and "Iron Man."

....The lawsuit claims profits from Lee's comic creations belong to the company, which emerged from bankruptcy in 2006. The suit claims Lee, Marvel and others have violated Stan Lee Media's copyright interests and that the firm is due profits from all properties, including blockbuster films that were made after 1998 and based on Lee's creations.... click here for full story...

Sunday, January 25, 2009

Copyrights & Campaigns: Ty, Inc. releases 'Marvelous Malia' and 'Sweet Sasha' dolls; will the First Daughters become First Plaintiffs?

Copyrights & Campaigns: Ty, Inc. releases 'Marvelous Malia' and 'Sweet Sasha' dolls; will the First Daughters become First Plaintiffs?

HBO Letting Inauguration Concert Clips Remain on YouTube

The network had asked the video site to remove the clips earlier in the week, citing copyright violation...however the Computer & Communications Industry Association, a lobbying organization whose members include Microsoft and Google, released a statement Wednesday criticizing the decision to remove the videos.

“This is a public event held on public grounds, open to all citizens without restriction. Those sharing their memories on YouTube or other formats should be covered under Fair Use laws. It’s yet another example of the outrageous, excessive attitude of certain big content companies,” said CCIA President & CEO Ed Black in a statement. “If we continue to give ground to overreaching requests from the greediest part of the content industry ‘this land’ will belong to them – not you and me.” Read the full story here...

YouTube Users Lash Out at Warner Music Group & Google with Protest Videos

Two things are clear in the YouTube/Warner Music scuffle. First, neither side is 100% right. And second, users are very, very angry that their videos are being pulled down or muted when they contain background music owned by Warner Music.

Those users aren’t being quiet about it, either. And scores of them are uploading protest videos to say exactly what they think. All are angry at Warner Music. And most express disappointment at Google, too, for reportedly walking away from the deal that allowed Warner’s music to be used legally on the site. I’ve embedded the “best of” below. More are being uploaded in real time, and this has the feel of a situation that is just now starting to boil over. Click here to see some of the best videos

Copyrights & Campaigns: Jackson Browne v. John McCain et al.: fully briefed

Copyrights & Campaigns: Jackson Browne v. John McCain et al.: fully briefed

Court upholds Lil Jon song copyright ruling

ATLANTA (AP) — The federal appeals court in Atlanta says a rap musician and producer has no valid claim of copyright violation involving his song The Weedman.

Redwin Wilchombe sued Lil Jon & the East Side Boyz, along with TVT Records and BME Records. He said they wrongly used the song on an album Kings of Crunk, which court documents say sold 2 million copies between October 2002 and January 2005. For full story click here

Saturday, January 3, 2009

Stopping music piracy ...

When 15 college students recently visited the Tribune editorial board, we asked them if they had committed a certain crime. They all eagerly pleaded guilty. They illegally download music on the Internet. A lot. This is so common that, one student said, "I kind of forgot that it was illegal."

Illegal—and common. The Recording Industry Association of America says 7.8 million U.S. households a month steal music online. That means singers, songwriters, musicians, producers and others don't get compensated for their work. The Institute for Policy Innovation, a pro-business think tank, says illegal music sharing costs the U.S. economy $12.5 billion a year....more

All He Needs Is Royalties

You may not recognize the name Patrick Halling, but if you’re a Beatles fan you’ve surely heard his work: he played violin on the recording of “All You Need Is Love,” and he is among the musicians asking European Union lawmakers to extend the period during which they can receive royalties for their recorded work....more

Industry watches new downloading law closely

Tennessee Voices

Gov. Phil Bredesen recently signed into law a bill requiring Tennessee universities to implement anti-piracy technologies and more stringent network oversight to prevent illegal downloading by students. The law applies to the governing boards of all public and private universities in Tennessee.

Universities will be required to report the "reasonable efforts … taken to attempt to defer infringement of copyrighted works over the school's computer and network resources" by April 1, 2009. After that, if a school receives more than 50 legally valid notices of infringement occurring on the institution's networks within a given year, the school will be required to submit a report detailing the specific efforts taken to curb such infringement, including the implementation of technology....more

Public Domain Day 2009 - January 1, 2009

It is January 1st, which means that this morning at midnight a batch more “life-plus” copyrights expired in those countries — most of them — where copyright expires at the end of the Nth year following the death of the author. Check out some copyrights who are now in public domain....