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use of Democratic Convention broadcast

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Bob Cole
use of Democratic Convention broadcast
on Aug 26, 2008 at 6:51:53 pm

A client whose business is going to be mentioned by one of the speakers at the Democratic Convention has asked me whether we can record and use video of this speech.

If she records the CNN or public tv feed, would she need permission to use the footage?

Bob C



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walter biscardi
Re: use of Democratic Convention broadcast
on Aug 26, 2008 at 7:21:09 pm

[Bob Cole] "If she records the CNN or public tv feed, would she need permission to use the footage? "

Yep. CNN owns the transmission of that programming and you cannot simply lift CNN's coverage unless it is a "fair use" broadcast. Same with the Public TV feed. The DNC owns all rights to the images broadcast from that event and you need authorized permission to use those images and sound. Just like any other broadcast show.



Walter Biscardi, Jr.
Biscardi Creative Media
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Gary Chvatal
Re: use of Democratic Convention broadcast
on Aug 27, 2008 at 2:18:05 am

The question made me think about C-Span. Knowing that the fed government can't copyright products they create...it caused me to look at the C-Span copyright policy.

They say that the do not copyright non-commercial use of federal government sponsored events like House and Senate proceedings...but that coverage does not apply to privately sponsored events (like the convention).

Interesting....



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walter biscardi
Re: use of Democratic Convention broadcast
on Aug 27, 2008 at 2:23:26 am

[Gary Chvatal] "They say that the do not copyright non-commercial use of federal government sponsored events like House and Senate proceedings...but that coverage does not apply to privately sponsored events (like the convention).

Interesting..."


The federal government is not sponsoring the conventions. The conventions are privately paid for by the two parties, thus they own the copyright to all the materials and they are the ones who decide who can and cannot broadcast the conventions.

As the conventions are part of the election process, it makes sense for both conventions to give CSPAN gavel to gavel coverage.



Walter Biscardi, Jr.
Biscardi Creative Media
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Bob Cole
Re: use of Democratic Convention broadcast
on Aug 27, 2008 at 2:37:25 am

This is where it would be great to have a lawyer's advice. The law may be black and white but the PRACTICE of law is filled with shades of gray. I wonder whether an experienced lawyer would say, "just do it."

But since I'm not a lawyer and don't want to hire one, I'll jump through the hoops. Practically speaking, it would be amazing if DNC objected to usage of a heart-warming, positive moment from its convention. I have a feeling that someone at DNC, amazed, will say, "Why'd you bother us with this? Of course use it..." and just be annoyed that he/she has had to take up time with it.

Thanks for the interesting insights. Great to know to be cautious about everybody else, and to know about free use of stuff from C-Span/Federal coverage.

Bob C







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walter biscardi
Re: use of Democratic Convention broadcast
on Aug 27, 2008 at 3:17:51 am

[Bob Cole] "Practically speaking, it would be amazing if DNC objected to usage of a heart-warming, positive moment from its convention. I have a feeling that someone at DNC, amazed, will say, "Why'd you bother us with this? Of course use it..." and just be annoyed that he/she has had to take up time with it. "

Because there's something called precedent. If they give it to you with no restrictions, no paperwork, no anything but "just do it" then they lose all control of their material.

Look at Disney having to sue daycare facilities to remove their character likenesses from the walls because the daycares did not pay licensing fees to use the characters. Even the Disney lawyers say they don't enjoy it, but they have to proceed in order to maintain the copyright of the characters. Let one person use it without license, everyone must be allowed it use it without license.

Bottom line, if you want to take the chance and you want to put your company on the line, that's your choice. Personally, I never want to get involved with lawyers with a company as large as the DNC.



Walter Biscardi, Jr.
Biscardi Creative Media
HD and SD Production for Broadcast and Independent Productions.

STOP STARING AND START GRADING WITH APPLE COLOR Apple Color Training DVD available now!
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Steve Wargo
Re: use of Democratic Convention broadcast
on Aug 27, 2008 at 7:00:04 am

[walter biscardi] "Look at Disney having to sue daycare facilities to remove their character likenesses from the walls because the daycares did not pay licensing fees to use the characters."

This is where Disney would do well to consider the good that the images do for the children. After all, the centers aren't selling the images on clothing. It's just a calming thing that the little arwe comfortable with. This could be a reasonably priced license that they could tie to a requirement that the centers purchase Bambi and play it every day with Disney Park commercials plugged in every 10 minutes. See, their greed nudged millions right out the door. Maybe I should call them.




Steve Wargo
Tempe, Arizona
It's a dry heat!

Sony HDCAM F-900 & HDW-2000/1 deck
5 Final Cut (not quite PRO) systems
Sony HVR-M25 HDV deck
2-Sony EX-1 HD .


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David Roth Weiss
Re: use of Democratic Convention broadcast
on Aug 26, 2008 at 7:42:40 pm

[Bob Cole] "would she need permission to use the footage?"

Bob, not that matters much, but what does she want to use it for? Her company website, television?

David Roth Weiss
Director/Editor
David Weiss Productions, Inc.
Los Angeles

POST-PRODUCTION WITHOUT THE USUAL INSANITY ™


A forum host of Creative COW's Apple Final Cut Pro, Business & Marketing, and Indie Film & Documentary forums.


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Bob Cole
Re: use of Democratic Convention broadcast
on Aug 26, 2008 at 8:22:25 pm

website I think. Very benign -- about how the company is providing needed jobs.

I guess Stephen Colbert's use of Fox News footage is "fair use." I can't imagine their getting permission to lampoon O'Reilly.





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David Roth Weiss
Re: use of Democratic Convention broadcast
on Aug 26, 2008 at 8:55:37 pm

[Bob Cole] "I guess Stephen Colbert's use of Fox News footage is "fair use." I can't imagine their getting permission to lampoon O'Reilly."

Colbert and O'Reilly are able to use the material because they are making a social commentary. Your client's use is self promotion. Of course we could argue that Colbert and O'Reilly self-promote via their social commentaries. But, that's fair game.

David Roth Weiss
Director/Editor
David Weiss Productions, Inc.
Los Angeles

POST-PRODUCTION WITHOUT THE USUAL INSANITY ™


A forum host of Creative COW's Apple Final Cut Pro, Business & Marketing, and Indie Film & Documentary forums.


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Steve Wargo
Re: use of Democratic Convention broadcast
on Aug 27, 2008 at 7:03:34 am

I'd use it and wait for the letter and then consider pulling it. Who is actually going to file a lawsuit over something so trivial? Been there, done that.





Steve Wargo
Tempe, Arizona
It's a dry heat!

Sony HDCAM F-900 & HDW-2000/1 deck
5 Final Cut (not quite PRO) systems
Sony HVR-M25 HDV deck
2-Sony EX-1 HD .


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Bob Cole
use, plus Disney mystery
on Aug 27, 2008 at 12:36:46 pm

[Steve Wargo] "Who is actually going to file a lawsuit over something so trivial?"

Not to disagree with Walter -- as I said in my post, I do intend to make sure we get written permission. But I also agree with Steve. Which is why a lawyer's perspective would be valuable -- he/she may well say "Don't bother them - they'll be puzzled that you're even asking," based on his/her experience. Based on history, not legal "fact."

Walter's comment about Disney is also based on history. I've commented before in this forum, I believe, about an incident where I merely ASKED permission to use a totally benign and fair-use-eligible (as evidence of world-wide influence of American culture) photo of a Chinese man wearing a Disney sweatshirt, and Disney reacted like I had committed homicide or worse in the town square in front of cute little children and nuns. It was the most offensive letter I've ever received, and over NOTHING. Disney (which of course based its early fortune on stealing old German folk tales) is not just a brave defender of its intellectual property -- it is a huge corporate bully that has feathered the nest of so many Congressmen that they manage to get the copyright law extended whenever one of their properties is about to go into public domain.

I have a question about Disney. I saw a little boy being led by the hand by his 20-ish Dad yesterday -- boy was wearing a "Mickey Mouse" (copyright, Disney Corp., not used by permission) teeshirt, and I wondered, WHY? What creative output involving Mickey Mouse has captured his imagination? Has Mickey been funny, or charming, or even INTERESTING, in the last fifty years? I don't get it. Is it brainwashing? I can understand MY being brainwashed -- I'm old enough to remember Walt intro'ing the Wonderful World of Disney, and I thought Walt was the coolest old guy ever. But this generation buying Mickey shirts for the kids? Must be a theme-park purchase.

Bob C





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walter biscardi
Re: use, plus Disney mystery
on Aug 27, 2008 at 12:55:37 pm

[Bob Cole] "Walter's comment about Disney is also based on history."

Actually that comment is based on an actual event that happened in Connecticut during the 2 years I lived up there. Disney served legal notice on the daycare center and it became one of those "community outrage" stories that played on the news for about three weeks until the daycare painted over the characters. One of the people interviewed multiple times was a lawyer representing Disney and he said they do not enjoy pursuing these types of cases, but by law they are required to and they pursue them vigorously.

Can't say as I blame them. I wouldn't want to lose control of any of those characters.



Walter Biscardi, Jr.
Biscardi Creative Media
HD and SD Production for Broadcast and Independent Productions.

STOP STARING AND START GRADING WITH APPLE COLOR Apple Color Training DVD available now!
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Bob Cole
Re: use, plus Disney mystery
on Aug 27, 2008 at 1:11:07 pm

[walter biscardi] "by law they are required to"

By corporate practice they're required to, yes.

But "by law?" Nah. They could have (a) pretended not to know about it; (b) given a license.

Disney goes after high-profile cases that make them look bad for the same reason the IRS goes after rock stars: obtain compliance by creating fear.

But Disney's protectiveness is, imho, excessive and counterproductive. I'll betcha a ton of people who saw those CT daycare broadcasts decided to cancel their trips to Disneyworld. There are other theme parks.

Imagine the good pr that would have come from Disney going the other direction on the daycare incident, and saying "We're going to donate X rolls of wallpaper to any daycare provider in the country that wants to brighten its walls."





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walter biscardi
Re: use, plus Disney mystery
on Aug 27, 2008 at 1:17:45 pm

[Bob Cole] "By corporate practice they're required to, yes.

But "by law?" Nah. They could have (a) pretended not to know about it; (b) given a license. "


No, by law they are required to. Part of maintaining a copyright and trademark on a product is the defend it against any known attempts to use them without permission. Once Disney was notified of these characters in the Daycare, they had to act.

The license fees would have to be the same fee structure as any other commercial enterprise. Disney did give the daycare the option to purchase a license, but of course it was too high for them to pay.

"Pretending not to know" is what schoolchildren do, not lawyers and professionals in business.

So yes, "by law."





Walter Biscardi, Jr.
Biscardi Creative Media
HD and SD Production for Broadcast and Independent Productions.

STOP STARING AND START GRADING WITH APPLE COLOR Apple Color Training DVD available now!
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Bob Cole
Re: use, plus Disney mystery
on Aug 27, 2008 at 2:34:36 pm

[walter biscardi] ""Pretending not to know" is what schoolchildren do, not lawyers and professionals in business."

Oooo burned!

Since neither of us is a lawyer this is kind of an unenlightening discussion, but do you have any evidence for your blanket statement? I have seen plenty of instances where businessmen (and policemen/lawyers/judges) exercised discretion about issues that were too trivial to litigate, enforce, or otherwise get hassled about. Which was the point of my question -- trying to get more info about the gray areas where rights enforcements are more trouble than they're worth. The law is clear enough; the practice is not.

The reason that Disney is famous about its rights enforcement policy is that they are exceptionally vigilant about enforcement. Not every business fits that mold. Hasbro, to take one recent example, took quite awhile to deal with Scrabulous -- and Hasbro is still in business.






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Walter Soyka
Re: use, plus Disney mystery
on Aug 27, 2008 at 4:43:17 pm

Hi Bob,

The issue here isn't likely copyright -- it's probably the characters as trademarks of Disney. As I understand it, trademarks must be defended, or else they could be considered abandoned and the company would lose the trademark protection. This is not true of copyright, which can be selectively enforced.

See http://cyber.law.harvard.edu/metaschool/fisher/domain/tm.htm#6

But -- I practice graphics, not law.

Best,

Walter Soyka

Keen Live, Inc.

Digital Media Design & Technology


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Timothy J. Allen
Re: use, plus Disney mystery
on Aug 28, 2008 at 10:03:32 pm

I've got to side with Walter on this one. A trademark is useless if you end up in court with a proven track record of allowing use without permission. Look at the Calvin peeing stickers that were on all those trucks back int he '90s.

I'm no Disney fan, but I've seen some pretty horrible renditions (knock offs) of Disney characters painted by amateur artists in small town daycares and restaurants.

Disney's licensing depends on strict quality control. Their business is all about image control. A Mickey with big teeth sticking out or eyes drawn too large (or worse, one drawn in the act of doing something "unethical") tarnishes - or at least cheapens - the image of not only the character, but the larger company which it iconicly represents.

If the daycare really wants Disney images on their wall, (ugh!) Disney makes it pretty easy to buy decals that are officially licensed. As long as they aren't using those images to advertise or promote their own enterprise, Disney would be happy.





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Mike Cohen
Re: use, plus Disney mystery
on Aug 29, 2008 at 2:49:51 pm

So I suppose that company in greater central CT that charges money to have the Little Mermaid wooden cutout on the front lawn wishing Uncle Bob a Happy 79th Birthday is a violation. It more than likely is.

I don't know about you, but in the more rural parts of CT, I still see a lot of trucks with the peeing Calvin decal.

Then there is the urban legend of the dad who sent a videotape of his little girl doing her ballet recital to the music from Beauty and the Beast, and getting sued by Disney.

Your average non-media worker does not even think about copyright or intellectual property.


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Bob Cole
what about Mickey?
on Aug 29, 2008 at 2:56:46 pm

I'm very grateful for the many responses to my original post about use of a clip... and I love the digressions too.

But does anybody have an insight into why Mickey Mouse is still selling teeshirts? to me that's even more of a mystery than intellectual property law.

I wonder whether there is a link between the fact that Disney is the company most famous for defending its trademarks/copyrights/whatever, and that their most famous icon is so ... dumb??? lame??? oh, I know how to describe it -- so... "Mickey-Mouse!"

Bob C



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Todd Terry
Re: what about Mickey?
on Aug 29, 2008 at 3:54:48 pm

[Bob Cole] "But does anybody have an insight into why Mickey Mouse is still selling teeshirts?"

It's one of those things that is inexplicably ingrained into children somehow... they have been fed the marketing Kool-Aid to such a degree that kids still love Mickey, even though most of them have never seen a Mickey Mouse cartoon.

Other examples abound...

Other than Michael Phelps (who I was disappointed to read that he ate five Big Macs at a sitting once), I don't know any adults who would touch McDonald's food with a ten-foot pole. Yet children love the place... for them, it's the place to be.

Ok, their french fries are good.


T2

__________________________________
Todd Terry
Creative Director
Fantastic Plastic Entertainment, Inc.
fantasticplastic.com






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Bob Cole
Re: what about Mickey?
on Aug 29, 2008 at 6:52:53 pm

[Todd Terry] "Michael Phelps (who I was disappointed to read that he ate five Big Macs at a sitting once), I"

It isn't going to hurt him a bit. I heard a couple of dieticians discuss his diet on the radio. Turns out when you swim that many miles/day you need to consume 8000-12000 calories just to avoid losing muscle mass.

He's a local hero here in Baltimore, and God knows we could use one. Like a lot of young (17 then) celebs he got into trouble in his brand new car one night -- DUI -- but he stepped up, took his punishment, and spoke to kids and the media about drinking and driving.

It'll be interesting to see how he does on SNL - Sept. 13, I think.

Hmmm.. Big Mac...... fries.... thanks a lot.



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Todd Terry
Re: what about Mickey?
on Aug 29, 2008 at 7:11:48 pm

[Bob Cole] "It isn't going to hurt him a bit."

Oh, I agree... he burns it right off.

I must say Michael turned me from a skeptic into a real fan... he's a stunning machine. He ate virtually nothing but carbs when training/competing... afterwards was when he loaded up on greasy meat.

I was just disappointed in his aesthetic choice of McDonalds. For God's sake, the kid's a hero... somebody hand him a real cheeseburger!


T2

__________________________________
Todd Terry
Creative Director
Fantastic Plastic Entertainment, Inc.
fantasticplastic.com






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walter biscardi
Re: use, plus Disney mystery
on Aug 29, 2008 at 4:22:39 pm

[Mike Cohen] "So I suppose that company in greater central CT that charges money to have the Little Mermaid wooden cutout on the front lawn wishing Uncle Bob a Happy 79th Birthday is a violation. It more than likely is. "

Legally, yes.



Walter Biscardi, Jr.
Biscardi Creative Media
HD and SD Production for Broadcast and Independent Productions.

STOP STARING AND START GRADING WITH APPLE COLOR Apple Color Training DVD available now!
Read my Blog!
View Walter Biscardi's profile on LinkedIn


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