Sunday, January 05, 2014

"The Good Wife" does copyright in "Goliath and David" on 5 January 2014

One of the plotlines in the 5 January 2014 episode titled "Goliath and David" of "The Good Wife" involved copyright.

Will was on one side and Alicia was on the other in an intellectual property case. Alicia represented a band suing a TV show for copyright infringement of what was initially a rap song. The TV show owned derivative rights. Alicia argued the work of the band, although using the same lyrics, was transformative because it changed the beat and style, and thereby became a satire of rap.

Of the audio recording at issue, at a minute 23 seconds in the bass track, there is a sound of bowling balls hitting pins in the Swedish version, showing that the TV show took the band's video.

Alicia asserts that this is actual theft. Alicia: you got your hand caught in the cookie jar; I wouldn't suggest the cookie jar does not exist. Thus, the IP angle evaporated, and the case turned into simple theft of a tangible item. [Query: where was digital analysis, such as Shazam?]

A surprise cameo by Peter Bogdanovich as the father of the baby! But the second plotline took an unexpected turn, which will appear in the next episode, along with a Bruce Springsteen cut.

**In passing, from

As noted in Campbell v. Acuff-Rose Music, Inc, “The central purpose of this investigation is to see...whether the new work merely [supersedes] the original creation, or instead adds something new, with a further purpose or different character, altering the first with new expression, meaning or message; it asks, in other words, whether and to what extent the new work is transformative.” Consequently, copyright owners do not control transformative uses that result in the creation of transformative works. Anyone can lawfully undertake a transformative use of another’s copyright protected work even before the copyright expires. No permission is required from the copyright owner.


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