EA Sued For Copyright Infringement Over College Fight Song

from the what's-good-for-the-goose? dept

Isn't it funny how some of the strongest defenders of copyright seem to have other opinions when they're on the other side of the fence? EA, which has kicked up lots of dust about copyright and DRM and the importance of intellectual property, is now finding itself on the receiving end of a lawsuit from from a composer and song writer alleging copyright infringement for the use of the UNLV "fight song" in various EA sports games. The guy claims to own the copyright on both the lyrics and the music. It's unclear if EA was under the impression that UNLV had licensed the song, and we often don't think of university fight songs as being helped along by copyright (you generally want more people singing them). So, while I think EA should be able to use the song without any trouble, it's always amusing when strong defenders of copyright suddenly find themselves in legal battles in which they may discover that copyright creates some new problems they didn't expect.

Filed Under: copyright, fight song, infringement, unlv, video games
Companies: ea


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  1. icon
    Mike (profile), 22 Oct 2008 @ 3:51pm

    Re:

    Mike, do you consider your blog copyright protected

    Nope.

    or can anyone use your words and simply change the name?

    Yes, you are free to do what you want with it. We have addressed this, at length. It's rather tiresome for people to keep bringing this up, but I'll repeat exactly what I've said before (from here: http://www.techdirt.com/article.php?sid=20070412/183135#c612)

    ---
    as we've said repeatedly, we have no problem with people taking our content and reposting it. It's funny how many people come here, like yourself, and assume you've found some "gotcha." You haven't. There already are about 10 sites that copy Techdirt, post for post. Some of them give us credit. Some of them don't. We don't go after any of them.

    Here's why:

    1. None of those sites get any traffic. By itself, they offer nothing special.

    2. If anything, it doesn't take people long to read those sites and figure out that the content is really from Techdirt. Then they just come here to the original source. So, it tends to help drive more traffic to us. That's cool.

    3. As soon as the people realize the other sites are simply copying us, it makes those sites look really, really bad. If you want to risk your reputation like that, go ahead, but it's a big risk.

    4. A big part of the value of Techdirt is the community here. You can't just replicate that.

    5. Another big part of the value of Techdirt is that we, the writers, engage in the comments. You absolutely cannot fake that on your own site.

    So, really, what's the purpose of copying our content, other than maybe driving a little traffic our way?

    So, if you really want to, I'd suggest it's pretty dumb, but go ahead.
    ---

    Just curious if you are willing to allow the things you have written to be used for purposes other than those you intended. And similar to this case, would you be upset if you weren't credited with creating this content?

    As I said, go right ahead. We built our business model such that it doesn't matter, and we encourage you to spread our content as far and wide as possible. Please help us. It only encourages more people to come here and sign up for our services.

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