Registration is a requirement to bring a Federal copyright lawsuit and get the Federal statutory damages
The photographing someone issue is based on right of publicity which is a whole different area of law so let's leave that discussion for another time and place
Now on to recording someone else's work. Yes you may record someone else's story by writing down what they say. However just because you wrote it down doesn't mean you created it. If you don't get the authorization to make copies of the story the person told you then you are infringing that persons copyright in their story
Here's an analogy. If you record someone performing a song they wrote you may have a copyright in the sound recording you created but if you don't get authorization to make distribute copies of your sound recording then your are infringing the song writers copyright in that song.
True what good is it for you if you're in the grave.
By the way if I carry this logic further shouldn't all of a persons property be distributed to the public upon death? I mean why should a dead persons heirs get all that money and property? They didn't earn it.
You are correct that you might be able to get statutory damages with timely registered copyright. There's no guarantee that a plaintiff will get statutory damages.
I must assume that the real reason the widow rushed to file registration is that registration is a requirement to bring a copyright infringement lawsuit
You say you can't imagine an interview being much different than taking someone's picture. I'm not sure but I believe photographers and film makers get a person to sign a release before using any picture for commercial purposes. The legal basis may not be copyright law but the photographer knows they need an authorized photo if they want to exploit the photo commercially.
Now I'm not saying that the plaintiff here is not using copyright to censor someone, which I believe is the main point of the article, I just want to point out that if you ask someone to tell you a story you don't own that story simply because you asked the question you have to get the person being interviewed to authorize the fixation of those words and agree to transfer the copyright if the interviewer does not the interviewer can claim copyright only in their questions that's it
Still would like to know where the author of this article got the idea that the interviewer owns what the interviewee says. Just asking
"starting with the fact that the person being interviewed very rarely holds a copyright in the words they said"
That is the exact opposite of the situation. If the person being interviewed doesn't sign a release before the interview or an assignment after the interview the person being interviewed retains ownership of the copyright in what they have said. Given that, upon the death of the person who retained copyright absent a will that says otherwise that copyright goes to the widow.
Also it is irrelevant if the widow "rushes" to register the copyright she owns the copyright whether it's registered or not
Long answer: You have to get permission to make the derivative sound recording. It is mentioned in the lawsuit and in the article that ABS licensed the creation of remastered sound recordings. It would be interesting to see that license agreement
You are correct. Most commenters here are completely unaware that many musicians used to make a living performing music. It is a sad fact that people are completely happy to hear music repeatedly performed by a machine.
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