[Mike Cohen]"I'm sure they used all of those movie clips with permission!"
A classic example of Fair Use. People posting clips on YouTube for the heck of it? NOT FAIR USE. Using songs for your non-commercial videos? NOT FAIR USE.
So what IS fair use?
My favorite quote from the original finding that established the actual guidelines of fair use:
[A] reviewer may fairly cite largely from the original work, if his design be really and truly to use the passages for the purposes of fair and reasonable criticism. On the other hand, it is as clear, that if he thus cites the most important parts of the work, with a view, not to criticize, but to supersede the use of the original work, and substitute the review for it, such a use will be deemed in law a piracy ...
I still find the use of the word "piracy" in contexts like this to be ridiculous to the point of offensiveness, and there are other guidelines, including the length of the clips...but the point is clear. Somebody like our kids here have no need to ask for permission for THIS. It has been granted to them by law.
Of course, it's still the nature of fair use to be judged on a case by case basis. That too is explicitly laid out in the law. There are no free rides. But my own -- obsessive, but obviously only semi-educated -- reading of the relevant findings find no way that this doesn't pass muster. To me, this looks like Fair Use at its best.