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Copyright or Wrong-logo

Copyright or Wrong

BBC

More Information

Location:

United Kingdom

Networks:

BBC

Description:

Leading copyright lawyer and author Richard Taylor asks whether copyright is an analogue law in the digital age. Everywhere we look, there are examples of copyright - from the music playing in stores to the images on billboards and the trainers we wear. And that is just in the real world. On the internet, users downloading music or posting images can infringe copyright on a daily basis without ever being aware. Richard Taylor examines the problems with copyright law, revealing the cracks in the current system which can stifle artistic creation, manipulate our view of history and even put hurdles in the way of scientific development. He acknowledges the importance of copyright in recognising and rewarding authorship but questions at what point it becomes more about financial greed and control, with increasing ownership in the hands of big music labels, film companies and publishers. US judge Alex Kozinski says, "Overprotecting intellectual property is as harmful as under protecting it. Nothing since we tamed fire is genuinely new, culture like technology, grows by accretion, each new creator building on the works of those who came before." Rows over copyright are not new. In 1842, Charles Dickens, at the height of his fame, embarked on a lengthy tour of America, not to promote his books but to stop US publishers ripping him off. Dickens failed - and took his revenge in the American passages in Martin Chuzzlewit. Dickens would be delighted at the growing enforcement of copyright law. In the early 1970s Terry Gilliam borrowed hundreds of images and paintings for his famous Monty Python animations, yet in 1995 he discovered times had changed when making the film 12 Monkeys. A court stopped distribution of the film, concluding that Gilliam had based a set design on a copyrighted drawing. Gilliam also had to pay for a background appearance of Andy Warhol's Xerox of Da Vinci's Last Supper. In today's digital age, ownership is more complicated and subject to different legislation in different countries. In Franc

Language:

English


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