Man Sues Bon Jovi, MLB, Others For $400 Billion Over Song He Claims Was Copied
from the idea-expression-dichotomy dept
We see stories all the time of people who write a story or a script and then when they see someone else has success with a similar idea, they assume that it was "stolen" and they're owed millions. Or, as the case may be, billions. A Red Sox fan named Samuel Bartley Steele, who apparently wrote a song called "(Man I Really) Love this Team," in 2004 got upset when he saw singer Bon Jovi release a song "I Love This Town" which was then used by Major League Baseball to promote the playoffs in 2007. He claims that he gave copies of the song to Red Sox execs, Red Sox players and MLB execs -- and thus Bon Jovi's song must have stolen from Steele's song. Of course, the two songs are apparently entirely different -- and even Steele's own musicologist testified that the songs were different. The district court tossed out the case, noting that no reasonable jury would find a similarity, but the guy has appealed and is asking for $400 billion, yes, with a b. If he won that much, perhaps he could donate some to the team to pick up a free agent outfielder or two this off-season, but I imagine that this case won't last very long.