Re:Create Recap – August 2, 2018

New Copy This Podcast With FreedomWorks’ Wayne Brough. In the 13th episode of Re:Create’s Copy This podcast, host Kirby Ferguson spoke with FreedomWorks Chief Economist Wayne Brough to help break down the complex and evolving relationship between conservatives and copyright law in the digital age. Tune in to learn more about how the internet is forcing new conversations about copyright and the role of government, and how achieving this delicate balance may just be an issue that bridges both sides of the aisle.

Fair Use Favors Prince Fans. Just as the “Dancing Baby” case involving Prince’s estate drew to an end, another fan faced off with his estate over copyright claims. The Minneapolis Star-Tribune reported on the incident after photojournalist Aaron Lavinsky tweeted a video of thousands of fans singing “Purple Rain” shortly after Prince’s death. After receiving a DMCA takedown notice from Universal Music Publishing Group, which owns the rights to “Purple Rain,” Lavinsky took to Twitter to protest the takedown arguing the video is a case of fair use. “They’re stealing this moment from Prince fans,” Lavinsky objected. “It was their moment of grieving. It wasn’t Universal Music’s moment.” The video has since been restored to Twitter.

EFF: CLASSICS Act Clashes With Robust Public Domain. In the march towards January 1, 2019 when thousands of new works will enter the public domain for the first time in decades, the Electronic Frontier Foundation (EFF) warned that the CLASSICS Act will be used as a tool by big content holders to “lock it all down again.” The blog by Katharine Trendacosta stated that the bill, “took advantage of a messy and confusing situation—not unusual in copyright—in order to let labels find new ways to make money off of music that should be in the public domain.” It also cited a letter by 42 scholars who oppose CLASSICS because it goes against the purpose of copyright.

A Win For Increased Access. Germany is one step closer to increased, free public wifi spots thanks to a recent court decision. Under old legal interpretations, German coffee shops, bars and other businesses could be held liable for copyright infringement conducted using their wifi network, reported Quartz. This led to “obvious chilling” effects as Germany, the largest economy in the EU, has significantly fewer free wifi hotspots per capita compared to other countries like the UK, Austria and Sweden. This week a high court upheld a 2017 law that was specifically designed to reduce liability burdens for businesses offering free wifi.