Buddy Holly's Estate Trying To Use Intellectual Property Laws To Stop Peggy Sue Autobiography

from the not-what-IP-is-for dept

Someone who prefers to remain anonymous sent in an article about how Buddy Holly's widow is trying to stop the publication of an autobiography by Peggy Sue Gerron, supposedly the woman whose name was the basis for Holly's famous song "Peggy Sue." The complaint seems to be that Peggy Sue Gerron is using Buddy Holly's "name and likeness" without permission. Though, the more likely explanation is that the Holly estate feels that it should get paid for this story, even though the story is told from Peggy Sue Gerron's own perspective. It has all the earmarks of a shakedown. And, of course, it will fail. It's unlikely that there's much of a case here. The most likely result will be that the book is allowed to be published and all this lawsuit will have done is to draw plenty of extra attention to the book, Whatever Happened to Peggy Sue?


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  1.  
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    fuse5k, Jan 16th, 2008 @ 4:19am

    nice

    I like the link to the book title...

    First BTW..

     

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  2.  
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    PaulT (profile), Jan 16th, 2008 @ 5:28am

    Huh?

    So by this logic, if I want to write the story of my own life, I have to get permission from everyone I've ever encountered to tell my story? Or does that only work if I've happened to know some famous people?

     

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  3.  
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    Hellsvilla, Jan 16th, 2008 @ 5:29am

    Hello Peggy Sue! Goodbye exclusive rights!

     

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  4.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Jan 16th, 2008 @ 5:32am

    Maybe Peggy Sue should counter sue Buddy Holly's estate for the use of her name without permission.

     

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  5.  
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    Bill, Jan 16th, 2008 @ 6:48am

    This is simply another in a long line of money-grabbing moves by Maria Elena Holly. First she attends the dedication of the Buddy Holly Walk of Fame, years later she sues because the WoF was using her husband's likeness and image. She attends the Buddy Holly Music Festival and, again, several years later decides she should receive more money for the use of his name. Result? No more Buddy Holly Music Festival. Next she'll go after the street named after him.

     

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  6.  
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    TheDock22, Jan 16th, 2008 @ 7:09am

    Not true

    Actually the lawsuit wants to keep the book from being released, period. The Buddy Holly estate is not asking for any money. There is probably something in the book that Maria Elena Holly doesn't want out in the public.

    Maybe Peggy Sue should counter sue Buddy Holly's estate for the use of her name without permission.

    Also, Peggy Sue can not sue because her first name ended up being used in a song. If her full name was used, she might have a case.

     

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  7.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Jan 16th, 2008 @ 7:26am

    Re: Not true

    Yeah, but that doesn't make for a good article. This has nothing to do with copyright and everything to do with someone not wanting Buddy Holly's image being harmed. That isn't a very good story, so just ignore the facts.

     

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  8.  
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    Joseph Branam, Jan 16th, 2008 @ 8:09am

    Buddy Holly's widow is infamous around Lubbock, TX (Buddy Holly's and my Hometown) The city annually puts on a local music festival called appropriately "The Buddy Holly Music Festival" Now, you'd think that would be an honor. But Maria Elena Holly got paid for years for the use of Buddy's name. This year, she wanted to jack the price up, and after looking at how much she wanted, the city council basically told her to F-Off. Now the festival is just called, "The Lubbock Music Festival" She even tried suing the city for not getting paid, even though it doesn't have Buddy's name on it anymore.

    This lawsuit is just another way of Maria Elena Holly to cash in on Buddy's name to make money for herself. She said in an interview that the book supposedly had info in it that defamed Buddy Holly, herself and other people. Guess Maria Elena wants the sole rights to screwing over her husband's name. They were only married for 6 months, but I guess that still gives her the right to do whatever she wants with his name. Needless to say, Maria Elena isn't very welcome in Lubbock, TX

     

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  9.  
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    Mike (profile), Jan 16th, 2008 @ 8:38am

    Re: Not true

    Actually the lawsuit wants to keep the book from being released, period. The Buddy Holly estate is not asking for any money.

    Right. That's what they say in court to get Gerron to feel that she needs to pay for the "rights" to publish the book. In the end, it's very much about money. By suing to block the publication of the book, it makes it seem that much more serious in order to make it that much more likely that Gerron will pay. It is very much about the money even if the lawsuit is officially to ban the book.

     

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  10.  
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    Mike (profile), Jan 16th, 2008 @ 8:40am

    Re: Re: Not true

    This has nothing to do with copyright and everything to do with someone not wanting Buddy Holly's image being harmed. That isn't a very good story, so just ignore the facts.

    Did I say it had to do with copyright? Nope.

    I said it had to do with complaints about his likeness. I also pointed out that there's little right for the estate to stop such a book.

    If the book is factual, she has every right to publish it.

    So who's ignoring facts?

     

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  11.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Jan 16th, 2008 @ 9:01am

    "So who's ignoring facts?"

    Maybe putting "Right. That's what they say in court to get Gerron to feel that she needs to pay for the "rights" to publish the book. In the end, it's very much about money."

    in the article would have changed my thoughts on the subject. You didn't and I agreed with Dock22 without knowing the background.

     

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  12.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Jan 16th, 2008 @ 9:09am

    Did someone miss the word TECH in TechDirt??

    How is this at all a technology story?

    This site has gone from a Tech news website to a "let's bash anyone doing anything having something loosely related to a patent or IP lawsuit" website.

    Get on the ball guys.

     

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  13.  
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    Mike (profile), Jan 16th, 2008 @ 9:13am

    Re:

    I said: "Though, the more likely explanation is that the Holly estate feels that it should get paid for this story"

    I thought by saying "the more likely explanation" that it was pretty clear that it was my conjecture as to what was happening. I apologize if it wasn't clear enough.

     

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  14.  
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    Mike (profile), Jan 16th, 2008 @ 9:16am

    Re: Did someone miss the word TECH in TechDirt??

    How is this at all a technology story?

    It's always great when people tell me that I shouldn't have written about something on my own site. The good thing about being in charge here is that I get to decide what's worth posting, and from the very beginning, intellectual property issues have always been a key part of the discussion around here. In fact, it was part of the reason why I started Techdirt.

    And, it actually has very much to do with the technology industry. Intellectual property issues are deeply interwoven with the tech industry, and understanding how they're being used and abused will have a huge impact on the technology world.

    I apologize if you find it not to your liking, but there are a number of pure technology news websites out there -- and we never claimed to be one anyway. We focus in on topics that have a larger impact -- and this story is a perfect example of that.

     

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  15.  
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    TheDock22, Jan 16th, 2008 @ 12:24pm

    Re: Re: Not true

    Right. That's what they say in court to get Gerron to feel that she needs to pay for the "rights" to publish the book.

    Hmm, I missed that part. I thought Gerron was going to fight this so she could release her book. If she loses the lawsuit, she would not be able to release her book even if she paid the royalties, right? This would be a good case to watch and see what shakes out. Gerron might well just cut a deal and pay royalties.

     

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  16.  
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    Scorpiaux, Jan 16th, 2008 @ 2:53pm

    Re: Did someone miss the word TECH in TechDirt??

    "This site has gone from a Tech news website to a 'let's bash anyone doing anything having something loosely related to a patent or IP lawsuit' website."

    ------

    This is actually just a blog. There's no way anyone should confuse it with being a tech news site.

    I get amused whenever other bloggers with similar views refer to each other and each other's sites by saying, "Alan Aardvark over at wtf.com demonstrates yada yada yada." That "over at" cracks me up. Makes everything sound almost collegiate. Bloggers need other bloggers it seems in order to support their biases and world view.

    "I may not agree with what Mike blogs, but I'll defend to the death his right to blog it." LOL!

     

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  17.  
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    William L, Jan 25th, 2008 @ 1:27am

    Whatever Happened to Peggy Sue

    To cite Peggy Sue's own words: She grew up. That appears to be something Maria Elena has yet to do. Peggy Sue is revealed to be one who was thrust into the spotlight by the song bearing her name and has had to cope with the sometimes positive or negative consequences that fame brought to her. On the other hand, Maria Elena has kept Buddy Holly's unreleased music tied up in court battles relating to money she believes she's entitled to as Holly's widow. She remarried after Buddy's death. All she appears to want is money. Peggy Sue wants the truth about her life and her experiences to be told.

     

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  18.  
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    Anonymous Ca., Feb 17th, 2008 @ 8:13am

    Doesn't Peggy Sue have a right to tell her own story? I saw something about Maria Elena wants to sue because the story in unauthorized. Maybe Peggy Sue should sue herself for not authorizing a biography. I just think Maria Elena's scared that the gig's up! Enough, the truth will be told!

     

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