Re:Create Recap – February 25, 2016

Buzzfeed: Fair Use Affects Our Daily Lives. In honor of Fair Use Week, the Re:Create Coalition posted a guide on The 19 Reasons To Be Thankful For “Fair Use.” From watching the Daily Show to viewing gifs on Deadspin or Buzzfeed to dressing up as your favorite character, the post shows just how prevalent fair use is in our daily lives.

Celebrating Fair Use This Week. Fair Use Week began on Monday and Re:Create Coalition members have been joining in on the opportunity to celebrate fair use. The Association of Research Libraries released an infographic titled Fair Use in a Day in the Life of a College Student, revealing how fair use impacts an ordinary day for a college student. Public Knowledge organized and hosted an AMA thread on Reddit to answer legal questions for anyone looking to create their own video game music (VGM) arrangement. Jonathan Band of PolicyBandwidth released a study that compares the European Union and the United States and how they are approaching the issue of orphaned works. The Organization for Transformative Works is hosting a virtual Q+A, encouraging readers to submit questions about fair use and its implication on fanworks. Be sure to take a look at these items and share them yourself!

The Nomination Is In For The Librarian Of Congress. On Wednesday, President Obama nominated Carla Hayden to be the new Librarian of Congress after almost three decades without any change in leadership. Re:Create praised the choice of a leader who understands the important role of digital works in a press release. The American Library Association, a coalition member, issued a statement that Obama “could not have made a better choice” while Public Knowledge praised Hayden’s “record of advancing the public interest.” The news comes at a time when the future of the office is under debate in this digital age.  Re:Create wrote a letter to the House Judiciary Committee last year outlining the need for technology upgrades and modernizing the Copyright Office.

Make Your Own Crying Michael Jordan Meme. The iconic photo of Michael Jordan tearing up at his induction into the Basketball Hall of Fame has gone viral since first published in 2009, and it has become an Internet sensation for memes and other creative uses. In a Feb. 17 article, ESPN asked the copyright question: Can sharing the Crying Michael Jordan meme get you sued? After consulting with media experts, ESPN makes the conclusion that the memes are legal because “it’s a transformative use of the original material” and a copyright suit over the meme would likely be unsuccessful.

Copyright Irony At Cambridge – You Can’t Make This Up. In an ironic twist, a Harvard law lecture on music copyright was temporarily taken down from YouTube after Sony Music objected to the video’s use in a number of clips of Jimi Hendrix. However, the video was restored because the professor was using the clips for educational purposes to explain music licensing. Digital Music News’ Feb. 18 article Sony Music Decides Harvard’s Copyright Lecture Isn’t Illegal After All praises the reinstatement of the YouTube video as a “solid win for proponents of the fair use doctrine.”

Bestselling Book Series Lawsuit Could Affect Copyright Over Popular Fantasy Genre Themes.  Slate provides an in-depth analysis of best-selling author Sherrilyn Kenyon’s copyright lawsuit against fellow best-selling author Cassandra Clare in the Feb. 17 report The Shadowhunters vs. the Dark-Hunters. Kenyon claims that the similarities between the two authors’ fantasy series–such as “‘an elite band of warriors that must protect the human world from the unseen paranormal threat’” or “‘enchanted swords’”– would lead to confusion between them. However, many readers and experts have noted that Kenyon claims copyright to “very commonplace motifs of the fantasy genre.”