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How Fair Use Brought Dream Deceivers to Home Video

Dream DeceiversA new generation is going to see the fabled documentary "Dream Deceivers," because its director employed fair use. 

Back in 1992, David Van Taylor ("A Perfect Candidate," "Good Ol' Charles Schulz") went behind the scenes of a notorious "heavy metal/suicide" trial for his first film.  Two young men had shot themselves, and their parents sued Judas Priest, claiming the youths were mesmerized by subliminal messages.  The masterfully-edited documentary was a look inside the vortex of moral panic.

It was also a copyright nightmare. Read more...

“Hoop Dreams” and “Life Itself” Exec Producer Recalls How ‘Clearance Culture’ Drove Him to Become a Fair Use Evangelist

QuinnThis interview is cross-posted from the Disruptive Competition (DisCo) blog. DisCo is a project by the Computer & Communications Industry Association to promote disruptive innovation and competition to policymakers.

Life Itself,” Kartemquin Films’ highly-acclaimed documentary about the late movie critic Roger Ebert, debuts in theaters this July 4 weekend, and it’ll contain clips from Ingmar Bergman’s movie “The Silence,” Martin Scorsese’s “Who’s That Knocking At My Door,” and Russ Meyer’s “Beyond the Valley of the Dolls.”Read more...

HathiTrust Decision: Good News for Media That Matters

HathiTrustThe June 10 appeals court decision on HathiTrust advances the useability of fair use, protects innovation and helps makers of media that matters.

HathiTrust is a service of a consortium of more than 90 libraries. Read more...

SXSW: Fair Use Everywhere

The Internet's Own BoyWhile it was easy to find lawyers drumming up business by trash-talking fair use at SXSW, it was hard to find a documentary that hadn’t employed it, sometimes lavishly. Furthermore, you could even see fair use at work in fiction film work.

"Fair use is so important for independent producers like myself," said Sandy McLeod, maker of "Seeds of Time,"about the crucial importance of agricultural seed banks for successful climate-change adaptation.

Films that told recent history employed fair use to tell that history. Margaret Brown’s "The Great Invisible," which told the story of the human and social consequences of the BP oil spill, used fair use, and has already obtained errors and omissions insurance for it. Katy Chevigny, co-director of E-Team, said, "Sure, we used lots of fair use." Brian Knappenberger noted, “There was a lot of fair use in "The Internet’s Own Boy," as in all my films.” Read more...

Why Fair Use Is More Dependable Than You Think

Peter JasziLast week, Peter Jaszi--the nation's leading expert on the copyright doctrine of fair use--was asked to testify before Congress on fair use and whether it needed reform. His short explanation, reproduced here for everyone who didn't make it to the hearing room, shows why fair use is both flexible and reliable, given the last two decades of court decisions: Read more...