Fair use question at DVinfo.net

Go Back   DV Info Net > And Now, For Something Completely Different... > Taking Care of Business

Taking Care of Business
The pen and paper aspects of DV -- put it in writing!


Reply
 
Thread Tools Search this Thread
Old August 17th, 2008, 08:20 AM   #1
Regular Crew
 
Join Date: Dec 2007
Location: Connecticut
Posts: 44
Fair use question

I have a project I'm working on right now and the script has the spokesman make a reference to a 1970's movie quote. The scene is easily available from youtube etc.

If I use that 10-15 sec clip in the project is it fair use?

The purpose of using the quote is it reinforces the statement being made by the spokesman.

I realize in advance that you aren't lawyers...

Thanks,
Lathe
__________________
Lathe Poland
www.thescenelab.com
Lathe Poland is offline   Reply With Quote
Old August 17th, 2008, 09:33 AM   #2
Major Player
 
Join Date: Jan 2008
Location: Utrecht, NL | Europe 3rd Rock from the Sun
Posts: 612
Quote:
Originally Posted by Lathe Poland View Post
I have a project I'm working on right now and the script has the spokesman make a reference to a 1970's movie quote. The scene is easily available from youtube etc.

If I use that 10-15 sec clip in the project is it fair use?
Check out this post by David Tames http://www.dvinfo.net/conf/919449-post5.html with relevant links to the Center of Social Media.

Making references is usually no problem. Wether a clip is available on YouTube or not has no bearing on it's use whatsoever.

George/
George Kroonder is offline   Reply With Quote
Old August 17th, 2008, 10:02 AM   #3
Inner Circle
 
Join Date: Mar 2005
Location: Hamilton, Ontario, Canada
Posts: 5,742
Quote:
Originally Posted by Lathe Poland View Post
I have a project I'm working on right now and the script has the spokesman make a reference to a 1970's movie quote. The scene is easily available from youtube etc.

If I use that 10-15 sec clip in the project is it fair use?

The purpose of using the quote is it reinforces the statement being made by the spokesman.

I realize in advance that you aren't lawyers...

Thanks,
Lathe
Not a lawyer ... Your post is a little confusing. In one sentence you have a spokesman on camera referencing something from a movie. I'd read that to mean you want to shoot an on-camera person saying something like "I saw 'Star Wars' again last night and I dreamt I was dating Princess Lea!" That would certainly be alright, it's a verbal reference without actually showing the copyrighted footage. But then you talk about a clip being available on YouTube. Following the verbal mention with a clip of the scene of Princess Lea with R2D2, directly incorporating the copyrighted footage from the original Star Wars film as a scene in your film, or showing it playing on a TV in the shot while your spoksperson watched it and sighed with love would require licensing except in very specific circumstances where 'fair use' would apply such as criticism, academic research, or classroom instruction.
__________________
Good news, Cousins! This week's chocolate ration is 15 grams!
Steve House is offline   Reply With Quote
Old August 17th, 2008, 06:39 PM   #4
Major Player
 
Join Date: Dec 2007
Location: Fayetteville, NC
Posts: 522
Legal Use Document

Quote:
Originally Posted by George Kroonder View Post
Check out this post by David Tames http://www.dvinfo.net/conf/919449-post5.html with relevant links to the Center of Social Media.
Making references is usually no problem. Whether a clip is available on YouTube or not has no bearing on it's use whatsoever.
George/
The above mentioned "fair use document" is a pie in the sky wish list created by a group of academics that has no basis in law or reality. It's only their wish list to make it easier for non rights holders to misappropriate the copyrighted work of others. It has no legal standing and using it as a legal guideline could land you in a world of trouble.

As always if it's not yours and you don't have permission to use it then you are treading on thin ice.
__________________
"The good thing about science is that it's true whether you believe it or not." Neil deGrasse Tyson http://nautilusproductions.com
Rick L. Allen is offline   Reply With Quote
Old August 18th, 2008, 05:45 PM   #5
Major Player
 
Join Date: Oct 2006
Location: San Diego, California
Posts: 505
Quote:
Originally Posted by Lathe Poland View Post
If I use that 10-15 sec clip in the project is it fair use?
You must have an intellectual property trial lawyer in the family.

I don't entireley agree with Rick Allen's assessment, since I believe there are legitimate fair use scenarios, but I do agree that the online proposal everyone seems to point to nowadays is just a wish list.

This is potentially dangerous stuff and it would be great if the forum administrator could put a sticky up on "Fair Use" which has replies from the IP lawyer who frequents this forum. I found his responses very illuminating about how and why people sue over copyright (agree with him or not). Most of us here are not in the Stephen Spielberg or Michael Moore category of filmmaker, and don't have resource to the kind of legal support that the big guys do. One or more legal actions against you for copyright infringement could be devastating to both you and your families.

Greg
Greg Quinn is offline   Reply With Quote
Old August 18th, 2008, 08:17 PM   #6
Inner Circle
 
Join Date: Sep 2002
Location: San Mateo, CA
Posts: 3,840
It's an interesting document posted on faire use. Some really good arguements and case law starting points are listed. Would be a nice place for the lawyer handling your lawsuit to start his research.

The people who put it together are well intentioned folks, who are looking to get the envelope 'expanded'. It gets expanded by people pushing the envelope untill someone cracks down and sues. Then case law gets created. It would be great if they were also offering legal services or funding for those who choose to be on the spear point of the vanguard for fair use and legal rights.


Yeah, I'm married to an IP attorney. I've seen both sides of the issues - and it aint pretty if it gets to court.
Richard Alvarez is offline   Reply With Quote
Old August 23rd, 2008, 11:51 AM   #7
Regular Crew
 
Join Date: Dec 2007
Location: Connecticut
Posts: 44
Great Information...with follow up question

Everyone,

Thank you for your input...it's as I thought put I figured it couldn't hurt to ask what you thought.

Here is a follow up:

What do you think about using a still photo of the actor in the scene saying his famous line?(think news anchor/daily show over the shoulder style.) This would appear over his shoulder while he mentions the quote made by the actor in this 70's movie.

Any thoughts?

Lathe
__________________
Lathe Poland
www.thescenelab.com
Lathe Poland is offline   Reply With Quote
Old August 23rd, 2008, 01:29 PM   #8
Inner Circle
 
Join Date: Mar 2005
Location: Hamilton, Ontario, Canada
Posts: 5,742
Quote:
Originally Posted by Lathe Poland View Post
Everyone,

Thank you for your input...it's as I thought put I figured it couldn't hurt to ask what you thought.

Here is a follow up:

What do you think about using a still photo of the actor in the scene saying his famous line?(think news anchor/daily show over the shoulder style.) This would appear over his shoulder while he mentions the quote made by the actor in this 70's movie.

Any thoughts?

Lathe
A photograph will most certainly be copyright, owned by the original photgrapher if he hasn't transferred it to someone else. You could also run afoul of using his likeness without a release - especially with actors and models, their specific likeness has economic value
__________________
Good news, Cousins! This week's chocolate ration is 15 grams!
Steve House is offline   Reply With Quote
Old August 23rd, 2008, 03:58 PM   #9
Major Player
 
Join Date: Oct 2006
Location: San Diego, California
Posts: 505
Quote:
Originally Posted by Lathe Poland View Post
What do you think about using a still photo of the actor in the scene saying his famous line?(think news anchor/daily show over the shoulder style.) This would appear over his shoulder while he mentions the quote made by the actor in this 70's movie.
Lathe;

I think you're assuming that a shorter clip from the film (i.e. one frame) will be less of a copyright issue than a longer clip. Each and every frame of the movie is copyrighted (or not, if it's public domain - have you checked if it's PD?). If the copyright owner sees its use, they may be inclined to go after you to protect their copyright interests or simply to get some money from you.

The bottom line to this is whether you're making a home movie just for friends/family that you know won't be presented publicly (probably still technically a copyright violation, but who will know?) or if it's intended to be displayed publicly. Personally I'm all for the fair use principal, but in a practical sense, you'll need to have a spare $5k-$10k stashed away to bring a lawyer in to defend you plus the same or more for compenation/damages etc...

My advice is to move past this and figure out the rest of the doc; seldom is one insert like this dealbreaking, it's just that we get hung up on using ideas.
Greg Quinn is offline   Reply With Quote
Old August 23rd, 2008, 04:39 PM   #10
Regular Crew
 
Join Date: Dec 2007
Location: Connecticut
Posts: 44
Stuck on this

I totally agree...it's actually the client thats really stuck on this. How would I even go about digging up the needed information to get permission to use this image.

If this isn't fair use...what is? (Honest question)

Lathe
__________________
Lathe Poland
www.thescenelab.com
Lathe Poland is offline   Reply With Quote
Old August 23rd, 2008, 09:38 PM   #11
Inner Circle
 
Join Date: Mar 2005
Location: Hamilton, Ontario, Canada
Posts: 5,742
Quote:
Originally Posted by Lathe Poland View Post
I totally agree...it's actually the client thats really stuck on this. How would I even go about digging up the needed information to get permission to use this image.

If this isn't fair use...what is? (Honest question)

Lathe
'Fair Use' is a provision of the law that grants exceptions to copyright restrictions when the copying is purposes such as journalism and news reporting, criticism, academic research, and classroom instruction in a non-profit setting. That's an over-simplification, of course, but it gives you the gist of the intent of the law. An example where it might apply in the case of copying the clip you want to use, would be when that clip is part of the content of a university film history class and the school library makes copies of it to have available for student viewing. See ... http://www.copyright.gov/fls/fl102.html
__________________
Good news, Cousins! This week's chocolate ration is 15 grams!
Steve House is offline   Reply With Quote
Old August 24th, 2008, 06:47 AM   #12
Regular Crew
 
Join Date: Dec 2007
Location: Connecticut
Posts: 44
Fair use = Non-profit

Steve,

I appreciate your patience. I finally get it...I'm just slow.

Although this project is for educational purposes it is far from non-profit.

Thanks,
__________________
Lathe Poland
www.thescenelab.com
Lathe Poland is offline   Reply With Quote
Old August 24th, 2008, 07:36 AM   #13
Inner Circle
 
Join Date: Mar 2005
Location: Hamilton, Ontario, Canada
Posts: 5,742
Quote:
Originally Posted by Lathe Poland View Post
Steve,

I appreciate your patience. I finally get it...I'm just slow.

Although this project is for educational purposes it is far from non-profit.

Thanks,
I am not a lawyer but I believe the law is far narrower in what it accepts as educational than the general business community or the general public might. As I understand it, if it's not produced by or on contract for the public or parochial school systems, a junior college, college or university expressly for internal classroom use, it probably doesn't qualify as a non-commercial "educational use." Even informational, promotional, and fund-raising materials produced by or for the school systems would not be considered 'educational uses.' Certainly copyrighted images included in textbooks or films & videos offered by a publisher for general sale to schools in the educational marketplace require licensing. Classroom materials used by commercial vocational and career 'colleges' or internal corporate training programs also are not considered educational uses to the best of my knowledge - sales of such course materials is how companies like Element K Courseware make their living and duplicating of their copyrighted materials for such uses would also require licensing . Likewise informative presentations for employees and stockholders, consumer information publications and programs, public relations materials, all of that sort of stuff is not 'education' either.

Took a look at your website. Very nice images, very well done. But sorry, your productions educating real estate agents and brokers on the uses of video for sales and marketing and 'best practices' are lightyears removed from what the copyright law considers "educational uses" as far as I know.
__________________
Good news, Cousins! This week's chocolate ration is 15 grams!
Steve House is offline   Reply With Quote
Old August 24th, 2008, 12:50 PM   #14
Major Player
 
Join Date: Oct 2006
Location: San Diego, California
Posts: 505
Quote:
Originally Posted by Steve House View Post
Took a look at your website. Very nice images, very well done.
Ditto, what a great looking web site - well done.
Greg Quinn is offline   Reply With Quote
Old August 24th, 2008, 05:59 PM   #15
Inner Circle
 
Join Date: Feb 2006
Location: Belfast, UK
Posts: 4,121
Quote:
Originally Posted by Lathe Poland View Post
I totally agree...it's actually the client thats really stuck on this. How would I even go about digging up the needed information to get permission to use this image.

If this isn't fair use...what is? (Honest question)

Lathe
You could contact the company that holds the copyright to the film you need material from. Assuming it's one of the studios, they have departments that handle queries like this all the time. I'd allow time for any clearance to process, it can take at least couple of weeks for them just to say no.
Brian Drysdale is offline   Reply
Reply

DV Info Net refers all where-to-buy and where-to-rent questions exclusively to these trusted full line dealers and rental houses...

Professional Video
(800) 833-4801
Portland, OR

B&H Photo Video
(866) 521-7381
New York, NY

Z.G.C.
(973) 335-4460
Mountain Lakes, NJ

Abel Cine Tech
(888) 700-4416
N.Y. NY & L.A. CA

Precision Camera
(800) 677-1023
Austin, TX

DV Info Net also encourages you to support local businesses and buy from an authorized dealer in your neighborhood.
  You are here: DV Info Net > And Now, For Something Completely Different... > Taking Care of Business

Thread Tools Search this Thread
Search this Thread:

Advanced Search

 



Google
 

All times are GMT -6. The time now is 10:30 AM.


DV Info Net -- Real Names, Real People, Real Info!
1998-2017 The Digital Video Information Network