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Is The Contract Cast Members Sign To Be On Survivor Covered By Copyright? CBS Thinks So...

from the copyright-survivor dept

Eric Goldman points us to the news that CBS sent a DMCA takedown to Scribd after the reality TV site uploaded a copy of the contract castmembers sign before being able to go on the show Survivor, as well as a copy of the "rulebook" they receive. CBS apparently claimed that both of these were covered by copyright. Thankfully, RealityBlurred filed a counternotice, claiming fair use due to its use for reporting and commentary -- leading to a scary two week period where CBS would have to sue if it wanted to keep the document offline. However, the two weeks passed and CBS did not respond to notification from Scribd, meaning that the Survivor Contract and the Survivor Rulebook are back online. And, of course, in true Streisand Effect tradition, this attempt at taking down this info has only served to generate even greater interest in what's in the contract and the rulebook. As an aside, while I can see the copyright claim on the rulebook, I think CBS might have more trouble getting a court to recognize copyright on a contract that contains little creative work.

Reader Comments (rss)

(Flattened / Threaded)

  • identicon
    Anonymous Coward, Sep 3rd, 2010 @ 4:56pm

    Copyright is supposed to replace contract law. So we have a contractual replacement system that puts contractual replacement restrictions on the copying and reuse of contracts.

    Uhm... if copyright didn't exist can we have a contract that puts restrictions on the copying and reuse of a contract.

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  • identicon
    Anonymous Coward, Sep 3rd, 2010 @ 6:23pm

    Censorship by A Company

    This is all about censorship by a company. Censors just want certain information removed out of the public gaze. CBS would have used any other law available to it, not just copyright, to achieve its censorship aims. The real question is, "Why was CBS trying so hard to censor this information?"

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  • icon
    Danny (profile), Sep 4th, 2010 @ 2:08pm

    Selling one's soul to the devil (AKA) CBS

    Wow, are those contracts/releases one sided! Of course they are written by one side, the one with all the power in this relationship.

    I guess any adult can sign a contract like this if he/she really wants to appear on the show. There must be many nasty family situations when other adults refuse to sign their release. It isn't at all clear to me that the relatives' release is binding in any way as it is not clear what consideration passes to them to make it a contract.

    The release for kids to sign is just obscene. Not only does there appear to be no consideration passing to the kids, but the CBS lawyers know full well the signature of the minor is not binding in any way.


    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  • icon
    Jay (profile), Sep 5th, 2010 @ 5:38pm

    Technically I don't think it has to be creative to be protected... just original...

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  • identicon
    Michael, Sep 7th, 2010 @ 5:27am

    Network Contracts

    Actually, network contracts are pretty creative.

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

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