Publication Alert: Reverse Engineering IP by IP law Prof. Tonya M. Evans (digital tech & IP)

Abstract

Reverse Engineering IP [free download]

Copyright 2013 Tonya M. Evans (published by Marquette Intellectual Property Law Review)

Headshot of Professor Tonya Evans
Credit: Leaping Lion Photography

“With the advent of the Internet and digital technology, the twenty-first century has ushered in a quantum increase in the ways to create, disseminate, and commercially exploit creativity. Digital technology allows anyone to create perfect digital copies of protected works in the comfort of their homes and to distribute them to tens, hundreds, thousands, and even millions of people with the click of a hyperlink via a handheld device. Indeed, copyright touches more ordinary people in substantial ways in this age of information than at any other time in American copyright history.

[….]

This Article asserts that copyright reform initiatives should “sample” (that is, borrow from) patent policies that protect access for further innovation to “remix” (that is, inform and reform) copyright law for the same end in the creative context. Throughout the Article, I use appropriation art to illustrate how an established cumulative medium of artistic creation is negatively impacted by overly restrictive copyright laws and may benefit from patent policies seemingly more well suited to encourage and support such creative innovation. Continue reading “Publication Alert: Reverse Engineering IP by IP law Prof. Tonya M. Evans (digital tech & IP)”

Article Examining Copyright’s Impact on Music Sampling Reaches IP Top Ten on SSRN

Professor Evans’ forthcoming article about copyright law and it’s impact on music generally, hip hop in particular, is listed among the top ten intellectual property articles downloaded from the prestigious Social Science Research Network (SSRN).

The article examines the deleterious impact of copyright law on music creation. It highlights hip hop music as an example of a genre significantly and negatively impacted by 1) the per se infringement rule applied in some instances to cases involving unauthorized sampling of sound recordings; and 2) traditional (and arguably erroneous) assumptions in copyright law and policy of independent creation and Romantic authorship.

For decades hip hop producers have relied on the innovative use of existing recordings (most of which are protected by copyright), to create completely new works. Specifically, cuttin’ and scratchin’, digital sampling, looping and (most recently) mashing are all methods of creating music and are all integral parts of the hip hop music aesthetic. Collectively these creative processes are the hallmark of the type of innovation and creativity born out of the hip hop music tradition.

Hip hop artists and producers from Chuck D, Queen Latifah, A Tribe Called Quest and M.C. Lyte to The RZA, Missy Elliott, Dangermouse and Jay Z have employed the sampler more as a musical instrument or palette than a tool of expediency or theft. But when done without the permission of the borrowed work’s copyright holder, sampling is at odds with copyright law. Unfortunately, copyright fails to acknowledge the historical role, informal norms and value of borrowing, cumulative creation and citation in music. Additionally, different copyright infringement standards are applied to the two types of music copyright (the musical composition and sound recording).

Click here to read the full abstract and to download the paper.

Article About Music Copyright & Hip Hop Makes SSRN’s Top Ten Download List!

Professor Evans’ article, Sampling, Looping, and Mashing … Oh My! How Hip Hop Music is Scratching More than the Surface of Copyright Law, made the top ten list of the Social Science Research Network (SSRN) for recent hits for all papers announced in the last 60 days in the Copyright & Trademark category.

Click here to see the top ten list and to read the article abstract and download a draft of the article.