Some “factoids” for you

11 05 2009

For a little pre-summer fun. Check out this link.

Not a lot of bells and whistles, but kind of amusing, to see the errors we make in common phrases.

This fits with photoblawg because whether you are a journalist or a lawyer, your communication skills make all the difference in getting your point across.

I myself will be checking back with this Website (yes, it is supposed to be capitalized):

One that I always struggle with: judgment


Roxana Saberi reportedly released

11 05 2009

Roxana Saberi has reportedly been released from prison! The Iranian-American journalist, who had been convicted of spying and jailed in Iran with a sentence of 8 years, was released when an appeals court, after pressure from the president of Iran, agreed with her defense that she could not be “cooperating with a hostile state” if there was “no hostiliy” between the U.S. and Iran. Her sentence was reduced and suspended.

Contributing to this victory: a change in tone between the new administration and Iran, upcoming Iranian elections, pressure from the U.S. president and secretary of state, and pressure from journalism groups.

Three cheers for some wonderful news on a Monday morning.

The copyright of “Happy Birthday”

7 05 2009
210 POSH awc

Happy Birthday Ladies! Did you get a performance license for that song?

Did you know that someone claims ownership to the copyright to the song “Happy Birthday to You”?

It was referenced in the dissent of a well-known copyright case, Eldred v. Ashcroft.

In honor of the end of law school finals, here is some light summer reading for you.

A legal scholar did some digging and found out some interesting facts. Digging deeply into the authorship of the lyrics and the melody, technical legal issues, evidentiary issues and policy issues, the author provides a logical look at the facts of a song whose music was written in 1893, but was combined with lyrics and published in 1935.

So what is the answer- as in many legal issues, it’s complicated. I won’t spoil the ending for you, you can read the paper yourself. Reading like a soap opera for copyright nerds like me, it is not only a very interesting tale, but a great look at the history of copyright law.

Ultimately, until tested in court, we won’t have a definitive answer, and no one seems likely to challenge it (the article addresses why). In the mean time, the song earns over $2 million in licensing revenue every year.

Find the article at this link.

Google Books deadline extended

3 05 2009

This post wast supposed to be a reminder about the opt-out deadline. However, I have read that the deadline has been extended to Sept. 4, and the hearing rescheduled for October 7. Of course that is no excuse for putting off your decision to the next last minute.

I am not advocating opting out or opting in. What I am advocating is reading the relevant information and making an actual decision. This is not like other class action settlments where all you lose is $5 from CD manufacurers. There are serious rights on the line here.

See my earlier post, or for that matter, google it!