[Wikimedia-l] photography restrictions at the Olympics

Birgitte_sb at yahoo.com Birgitte_sb at yahoo.com
Sat Jul 28 02:12:24 UTC 2012

On Jul 27, 2012, at 7:29 PM, Anthony <wikimail at inbox.org> wrote:

> On Fri, Jul 27, 2012 at 6:47 PM,  <Birgitte_sb at yahoo.com> wrote:
>> On Jul 27, 2012, at 8:14 AM, Anthony <wikimail at inbox.org> wrote:
>>> My advice is that the law isn't that simple, and that blanket
>>> statements of that type are quite often incorrect.
>> To the degree that we can advise people at all on copyright, it is safe to say that at the point someone clicked the
>> shutter they were the sole owner of any copyright.
> Well, no, I disagree.  It is not at all "safe to say".
> Would you also say that whoever presses "record" on a tape player is
> the sole owner of the copyright of the recording?

The making of a recording is probably less likely than a photograph to create a copyright at all, but . . .

*Assuming the recording in question is contemporary.
*Assuming the recording is not itself an infringement. 
*Assuming the recording is not utilitarian.
*Assuming the recording contains a minimal amount of original expression.
*Assuming the recording was produced with consent of the performers.
*Assuming the recorder is not bound by a contract that specifies otherwise.

. . . Then, yes, any person who fixes an original work of authorship by pressing "record" on a tape-recorder will be granted the copyrights to the expression that they have recorded. This why black-box recordings (¡non-utilitarian non-infringing portions thereof!) of airline pilots in the US are in the public domain. The Federal Government (FAA) owns copyrights for arranging the recordings of these otherwise unfixed performances by the consenting pilots.

It can get even crazier than that; see Walter v. Lane.

Birgitte SB

Fair warning to those less familiar with this subject: Copyright is not Commonsense! 

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