John Ben DeVette's Blog

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Contract Law Takes Precedence Over Copyright Law: PINK FLOYD WINS IN COURT

“Pink Floyd Wins Court Battle With EMI Over Downloads” was announced last week in London. [ http://www.nytimes.com/2010/03/12/business/media/12pink.html ] A good reminder to authors and creators of intellectual property. Whenever you enter into a contract with a publisher (or in this case a recording company or record label) the wording of the contract supersedes and overrides copyright law.

In the case of Pink Floyd versus EMI, the contract in question was favorable to the artists’ interests, and limited the way EMI was allowed to sell (online or in any format) Pink Floyd’s recordings. In effect, EMI must sell only entire the entire album or CD, and is not allowed to sell individual songs online or in any format.

In essence this is the same battle that academic publishers are having with authors. Increasingly, authors want to control how their intellectual property (IP) is being used. Any contracts signed between author and publisher will supersede common copyright law. So when submitting articles for publication, please pay close attention to the fine print before signing away your future rights.

This has implications for university institutional repositories and open access publishing endeavors, obviously.  Choosing a Creative Commons License in effect will also supercede common copyright law, but once again, any contracts signed between author and publisher will supersede a Creative Commons license in the same way it overrides common copyright law.

LINK TO ORIGINAL NYT ARTICLE:   http://www.nytimes.com/2010/03/12/business/media/12pink.html

Creative Commons:  http://creativecommons.org/

15 March 2010 Posted by | Digital Publishing, Patent Copyright Intellectual Property IP, Self Publishing, Uncategorized | , , , , , | Leave a comment

   

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