Comedian Has To Retell Joke 2nd Time, Because Viacom Couldn't Have Him Sing Four Words: 'We Are The World'
from the copyright-insanity dept
Copyright insanity continues. Stephan Kinsella posts an email from Luke Mroz, who recently attended a Comedy Central taping of some standup comics, that is going to be used in an upcoming TV show. Mroz explains how copyright law got in the way and forced one comedian to have to come back out and tell a joke a second time:
One of the performers was one of my favorite comedians named Robert Kelly. He told a really good joke about how he rarely used the word love because it loses its strength if you use it to much. When his wife tells him she loves him, he shrugs it off. When his father told him he loved him, for the first time in his adult life when he graduated high school, he feigned breaking down into tears and acting like an emotional wreck. While doing this, he feigned being hugged and sang the phrase "We are the world". He then went on to his next joke.Remember, all he did was "sing" the four words in the title once. He didn't break out into a full rendition of the song. Just "We Are The World." That's it. And he had to come back out and tell the joke a second time to avoid Comedy Central (really: Viacom) having to clear the rights on that song -- a song that was written for charity. But copyright isn't stopping free expression?
After another comedian, the taping ended. We were informed that the crowd had to stay put because Bob Kelly had to come out and re-film a joke. It was the joke I just mentioned. They said it had to be re-taped because Comedy Central didn't have the rights to the song "We Are The World".