Words of Advice:

"Never Feel Sorry For Anyone Who Owns an Airplane."-- Tina Marie

If Something Seems To Be Too Good To Be True, It's Best To Shoot It, Just In Case." -- Fiona Glenanne

Flying the Airplane is More Important than Radioing Your Plight to a Person on the Ground
Who is Incapable of Understanding or Doing Anything About It.
" -- Unknown

"There seems to be almost no problem that Congress cannot, by diligent efforts and careful legislative drafting, make ten times worse." -- Me

"What the hell is an `Aluminum Falcon'?" -- Emperor Palpatine

"Eck!" -- George the Cat

Wednesday, September 23, 2015

"Happy Birthday" is Now Free

None of the companies that have collected royalties on the "Happy Birthday" song for the past 80 years held a valid copyright claim to one of the most popular songs in history, a federal judge in Los Angeles ruled on Tuesday.

In a stunning reversal of decades of copyright claims, the judge ruled that Warner/Chappell never had the right to charge for the use of the "Happy Birthday To You" song. Warner had been enforcing a copyright since 1988, when it bought Birch Tree Group, the successor to Clayton F. Summy Co., which claimed the original disputed copyright.

Judge George H. King ruled that a copyright filed by the Summy Co. in 1935 granted only the rights to specific piano arrangements of the music, not the actual song.
They're not the first group of clowns who have tried to gravy-train on copyrights forever. The descendants of Arthur Conan Doyle got slapped down for doing that; they were charging a license fee that was small enough that most publishers opted to pay rather than fight. Until Leslie Klinger, an author, refused and sued, winning his attorney's fees in the process.

It's good to see some of the Shkrelis of the world lose these cases.


Old NFO said...

Bout damn time...

Ole Phat Stu said...

Who owns the copyright on the Jewish version "Happy Brith-day to you!"?

No that's not a typo, it's a pun ;-)