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Big test case coming on digital copyright

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Big test case coming on digital copyright

Postby MrFredPFL » Mon Aug 27, 2018 11:06 pm

Story :

An important case due to reach the Supreme Court soon seeks to test the legality of collecting a massive database of recorded TV and radio programming and selling access to it to news outlets, scholars and other researches, government agencies, and the police. If granted review by the Justices, it would be a significant test in the Digital Age of the legal theory that excuses copying that otherwise could violate copyright law.

At issue in the developing case of TVEyes, Inc., v. Fox News Network is the definition of “fair use” – a legal defense that copyright law provides when the owner of rights to an original creation claims infringement by unauthorized copying. While the Supreme Court will have the option of denying review of the case, the lower appeals courts appear to be divided on that question, and such a dispute often attracts the interest of the Justices.

The Supreme Court last ruled on the “fair use” concept a quarter-century ago, when it gave those who parody a popular song the protection of that legal defense. That case cleared a parody by the band, 2 Live Crew, of Roy Orbison’s ballad, “Oh, Pretty Woman.”

TVEyes, based in Fairfield, Conn., describes itself as a search engine for broadcasting. The for-profit company monitors some 1,400 TV and radio channels and makes available – for a monthly fee of about $500 – ten-minute clips of what it has gathered. It does not sell its service to consumers for personal use. It tells the users that they are to do only internal research on the material, and warns them that – while they may download and save the clips – they may run into legal trouble if they reproduce them for others’ access.

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