Re:Create Recap – Week of February 8

The Public Domain Takes The Cake In Happy Birthday Copyright Case. New details in the settlement reached by parties in the copyright case over the “Happy Birthday To You” song reveal that as much as $14 million will be offered to those who paid for the rights. The Feb. 9 New York Post article, Settlement gift: ‘Happy Birthday’ song won’t cost you anything, covers the settlement details that bring an end to the class action lawsuit: “The beloved ditty will be in the public domain under a proposed settlement that offers up to $14 million to those who paid for the rights to use the song as far back as 1949.”

Copyright Controversy Over First Super Bowl Footage. In the Feb. 4 article, Why the NFL Can’t Control the Only Broadcast of Super Bowl I, Fortune’s Jeff John Roberts analyzes the copyright controversy over the sole remaining recording of the first Super Bowl game in 1967, which is owned by a private citizen whose father taped the broadcast. Copyright lawyer Lloyd Jassin argues the right to sell the tape would be protected by “first sale doctrine,” while Roberts makes the case that the recording could be in the public domain.

Google Books Is What “The Fair Use Exemption Was Intended To Promote.” Google Books continues to defend itself against the Authors Guild’s copyright lawsuit, which may go to the Supreme Court as reported in the Feb. 8 Wall Street Journal article, High Court Last Hope for Copyright Lawsuit Over Google Book Scanning. Fortune’s Mathew Ingram notes the Guild’s legal points in its Supreme Court petition may actually hurt its own argument: “The authors group may be right that Congress could not have foreseen the Internet and what it would do to content and media in the 21st century, but that actually hurts its argument more than it helps. …[T]he fact that someone has scanned tens of millions of books so that people could find and potentially buy them isn’t the worst thing that could happen to books as a social good, it’s the best thing. It’s exactly what the ‘fair use’ exemption was intended to promote.”

Podcast Breakdown: Cosplay In The Courts. The Star Athletica LLC v. Varsity Brands case is gaining attention in the fanfiction world. Understanding the potential impact this case could have on homemade costumes and cosplay, Meredith Rose and Meredith Whipple from Public Knowledge sit down to discuss the case in greater detail and its journey to the Supreme Court.

The Re:Create Coalition Will Be At SXSW…Will You? What does the future hold for copyright? Who are the gatekeepers and how does this power structure need to change to meet not only the needs of today’s digital age, but also the needs of future creativity and innovation? The Re:Create Coalition will host an event at South by Southwest (SXSW) Interactive — “Copyright & Creators 2026” — on March 11 to discuss the future of copyright law over the next decade. The panel of policy experts, including a fanworks leader, social justice advocate and futurist, will debate the evolution of copyright law and how it affects underprivileged communities, consumers, fans, digital entrepreneurs and more. Click here for additional details.