Press Release Copyright Reform

Public Knowledge Files Amicus Brief in ‘Blurred Lines’ Copyright Battle

August 31, 2016 , ,

Today, Public Knowledge filed an amicus curiae brief in Williams v. Gaye, the “Blurred Lines” case, before the 9th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals. This brief argues that creative works build upon other creative works, and thus copyright law should not limit creativity by expanding over non-copyrightable elements in those works.

The following can be attributed to Charles Duan, Director of the Patent Reform Project at Public Knowledge:

“Musical composers depend on their ability to borrow from and reuse past works. All genres of music exhibit creative borrowing, from classical symphonies to hip-hop chart toppers.

“And it is essential that musicians be allowed to engage in this sort of borrowing. We enjoy music because it evokes memories and feelings as we listen to it. Composers cannot evoke those memories and feelings without making reference to things we have heard in the past.

“Copyright law should not get in the way of a composer’s ability to make these sorts of references. To do otherwise would seriously inhibit the creation of new music.”

You may view the amicus brief here.