Monday, September 25, 2023

Copyright and Free Speech at the Supreme Court?

The Supreme court has been petitioned to overrule the Ninth Circuit’s ruling in the infamous “dancing baby” case where it was decided “no matter how unreasonable that belief,” copyright holders could use their own standards to decide if a use was infringing. The short video, posted to youtube, showed a baby dancing to a Prince song. YouTube removed the video for copyright infringement per Universal’s request.

The lawsuit comes from the Electronic Frontier Foundation (EFF). EFF’s Staff Attorney, Corynne McSherry, reportedly stated; “copyright holders should be held accountable when they undermine non-infringing fair uses like this video.”

The petition is part of EEF’s mission to protect the first amendment, often stunted by spurious copyright disputes. McSherry commented on the Supreme Court petition, lamenting that the Ninth Circuit ruling allows copyright holders to send take down notices “based on nothing more than an unreasonable hunch, or subjective criteria they simply made up must be held accountable.”


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