from the i'm-just-so-happy dept
Davis was jailed for contempt after she refused to do her job and denied the rights of citizens in her district, as she well should have been. After her underlings began actually doing their jobs, the judge released her. Then this happened (WARNING: this video is likely to make you vomit).
Yes, with presidential hopeful Mike Huckabee leading the crowd, Kim Davis was released from jail in a manner so grossly contrived as to be accompanied by music. You know, like a wrestler's entrance into the ring. The song, sigh, was Survivor's Eye of the Tiger, best known from Rocky, a movie built on themes of religious expression, government disobedience, and oh my god none of that is true and how is this happening? It's unclear exactly what hand Huckabee had in putting together this soundtrack to celebrate the release of Davis, who is, hilariously, a registered Democrat. But what is clear is that Survivor band members are pissed.
The band Survivor has filed a $1.2 million lawsuit against Kim Davis and Mike Huckabee over the unauthorized use of its hit song “Eye of the Tiger.” Speaking with Billboard, band co-founder Jim Peterik said he was also not pleased with the unauthorized use of the song.
“The song has motivated thousands through the years to reach beyond their limits. Its use for the release of Kim Davis does not support my views or my politics.”
NBC News spoke with Harvard Law Professor, Paul Horner, who believes Survivor has a strong case.
“Mike Huckabee and Kim Davis had no permission to use the song, bottom line,” Horner said. “This whole incident is in the national public spot light right now, and Huckabee is running for president; he should have known better.”
Adding to the idea that the public performance wasn't properly licensed is that EMI has jumped into this legal dustup as well.
“As far as I have heard, no one secured the rights to that public performance of ‘Eye of the Tiger’ and as a result they violated EMI’s intellectual property rights today,” adds [IP attorney Paul] Steiner. “It is illegal for someone to ignore IP law and would make the offending parties guilty of infringement under Copyright Law (17 U.S.C. § 501(a)).”
Steiner alleges that he has already heard of the record company executives “taking exception” to the use of their intellectual property to “help a criminal grandstand in front of an audience”.
But we need to always be mindful of the original intent and purpose of copyright law in cases like these. Even for those of us that might detest Davis and her message, or who might equally detest an individual that thinks they can lord over her constituents in a blatantly unconstitutional manner, the notion that copyright might be deployed in a manner that ultimately is a picking and choosing who can use art based on their political messages is somewhat distasteful as well. After all, judging from the band's reaction, I imagine they wouldn't be quite so frothy at the mouth if Davis' political message were one with which the band agreed. That deviates from the purpose of copyright, which was to encourage expression, not insulate a band from political associations.