Culture

by Mike Masnick


Filed Under:
copyright, fair use, hoehn, standing

Companies:
apa, riaa, righthaven



RIAA Really Planning To Join Righthaven Fight

from the incredible dept

We'd noted that the RIAA was thinking about joining the Righthaven appeal in the Hoehn case, specifically to argue against the fair use finding (the RIAA: not a fan of fair use rulings that say fair use can exist on the use of full works). As you can see embedded below, a lawyer representing the RIAA and the Association of American Publishers (AAP) is planning to try to join the case, arguing that the issue of standing (i.e., the fact that Righthaven doesn't have the copyrights in question) should preclude the court from even considering the fair use question. The letter below is from Hoehn's lawyer, Marc Randazza, explaining why this is not a wise move on the part of the RIAA and AAP. Here's a snippet:
If you have actually managed to convince your clients that it is a good idea for them to spend tens thousands of dollars (or more) in this case for the sole eventual purpose of merely costing Mr. Hoehn money, you can rest assured that it will be a public relations negative for them, in no small part due to Righthavenís poor handling of this case, along with hundreds of others, from its inception to present. I strongly suggest that you consider recommending a different "make-work" project for your clients. I understand that in this day and age of biglaw layoffs, it is a constant battle to make sure that your existence is justified on the firmís billing ledgers. This is the wrong case with which to round out your sheet. I can assure you of that. Your clients will waste money and all the money will buy them is the opportunity to look like idiots.
Once again, the RIAA is pretty braindead when it comes to any sense of what the PR impact of its actions would be, so I doubt it'll change its mind here. The standard thinking is just "expanding fair use is bad, we must fight it at all costs."

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  1. identicon
    Anonymous Coward, 5 Dec 2011 @ 12:07pm

    Re: Not that I disagree with Randazza

    Seriously.

    I like a lot of what Randazza does, even when he's snarky, but this letter is unecessarily snarky without warrant.

    As I understand it, the RIAA isn't even siding with Righthaven on the ultimate issue, just saying that the court doesn't need to address the fair use issue, and therefore shouldn't.

    I'm not even sure how that position hurts Randazza's client.

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