Thursday, July 18, 2013

PRECEDENT IS NOT DEAD, BUT IT CERTAINLY STILL IS PAST: Following up on Matt's story from October, a federal district court judge in Mississippi has tossed on fair use grounds the William Faulkner estate's copyright suit over the borrowing of a nine-word aphorism in Woody Allen's Midnight in Paris: "The copyrighted work is a serious piece of literature lifted for use in a speaking part in a movie comedy, as opposed to a printed portion of a novel printed in a newspaper, or a song’s melody sampled in another song. This transmogrification in medium tips this factor in favor of transformative, and thus, fair use."

ETA, by Matt:  Please also note that the full opinion thanks the parties that they "did not ask the court to compare The Sound and the Fury to Sharknado," thus guaranteeing that "Sharknado" will have at least one hit in ALLFEDS searches.


  1. Adam B.4:54 PM

    Also, again: Corey Stoll got robbed today.

  2. Joseph Finn5:07 PM

    I really, really, REALLY dislike Hemingway. Really. (Which explains, of course, why I live in Hemingway Central, Oak Park IL.) But my goodness, Stoll as Hemingway was one of the best parts of MIP.

  3. 1K TimesNo3:25 PM

    The written work? The person? Both? Why? His first two novels, and early stories, are critical to the development of literature. That said, MIP left me cold (one beef out of many: Bunuel depicted with a French accent, when he was Spanish).

  4. Joseph Finn4:19 PM

    The written work. I find his work middling, repetivite and overly laconic in the extreme and a pale comparison to his contemporaries. How he somehow won the history lottery and gets assigned to everyone while a far better writer like Dos Passos or James T. Farrell languishes in obscurity is beyond me.

    The Oak Park thing is just plain funny to me as we have a Hemingway Museum as well as various birthplaces, but by all accounts Hemingway couldn't wait to get out of here.