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Poster: Video-Cellar Date: Jun 18, 2009 2:33am
Forum: DriveInMovieAds Subject: Re: Drive-In clips removed due to copyright claim

Generally, if these clips date from prior to March 1, 1989, and were published (ie Provided to groups or individuals for projection onto a screen for a paying audience) without a copyright notice or subsequent registration with USCO within 5 years (if pulished between 1978-1989) copyright in the film is non-existant. "Motion Pictures" are defined as "audiovisual works consisting of a series of related images which, when shown in succession, impart an impression of motion, together with accompanying sounds, if any."

Coming from the perspective of actually also being a stock library owner, I can confirm that it is a very common misinterpretation of law amongst stock librarians and archivists that physical ownership of film or video stock equals an exclusive right to exploit that stock (copyright). Unfortunately, this is incorrect. If copyright protection was lost, or never sought, there are no rights that can be defended in the original combined elements that make up the "motion picture" involved (images and sounds), unless that film is effected by the genuine and proper application of Stewart v Abend decision (which applies to works where the author of the original work from which the copyright work is derived was deceased at or before its renewal year between 1964-1978). The only rights that can be sought are in new elements such as arrangement or compilation of stock footage for a documentary or DVD. It that case it would only be the whole compilation or new program that would be subject to copyright. If original unprotected elements were lifted out of context of the new copilation film and re-introduced to their original context any new copyright would not apply to them. In short, there is no copyright in copies of public domain works.

The only way I could see that all of the films that have been removed were in violation of any actual copyright would be if none of the above applied (ie all original films contained notices or registrations) or that these items were not vintage clips which they appeared to be. It seems impossible that many different items from a number of different uploading sources would all infringe the rights of a single stock library. Especially when that stock company seems to only have a very small number of products in its library.
http://www.screenattractions.com/catalog/catalog.html

This post was modified by Video-Cellar on 2009-06-18 09:33:55

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Poster: guyzilla Date: Jun 18, 2009 9:59am
Forum: DriveInMovieAds Subject: Re: Drive-In clips removed due to copyright claim

Then hopefully the clips that are here can stay here.

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Poster: cosmicola Date: Jun 18, 2009 3:33pm
Forum: DriveInMovieAds Subject: Re: Drive-In clips removed due to copyright claim

I think so. Rereading the original post, he spoke in past tense. Removed. I think that was a response to some earlier discussions down the page, about what happened to the stuff that used to be here but has since vanished. Looking through virtually all of the 96 items in this particular current archive, I see no copyright notices or SWV watermarks.

This post was modified by cosmicola on 2009-06-18 22:33:36

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Poster: Diana Hamilton Date: Aug 12, 2009 2:09pm
Forum: DriveInMovieAds Subject: Re: Drive-In clips earlier removed

in past tense. Removed. ...stuff that used to be here but has since vanished.

Right, I just looked back in the logs, and there was a set of around 60 pulled concurrently last October.

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Poster: guyzilla Date: Aug 13, 2009 4:19pm
Forum: DriveInMovieAds Subject: Re: Drive-In clips earlier removed

Ive given this a lot of thought since this controversy started and as far as I'm concerned, if any of these items get pulled, it won't be me pulling them. They're here to stay until IA staff decides they should go, and that goes for anything else I put up unless, of course, I find out whatever it is ain't PD. Other than that, everything I put up is yours, FOREVER!!

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Poster: NoiseCollector Date: Aug 9, 2010 11:19am
Forum: DriveInMovieAds Subject: Re: Drive-In clips earlier removed

Watermarks are evil. For the most part I use public domain and creative commons whenever possible but for noncommercial satirical purposes I use copyrighted stuff all the time and not once has anyone, including youtube, ever had a problem. The merchandise that the original poster in this thread sells looks like actual cellulose film stock and I fail to see how me or anyone else using a 3 second clip of a intermission in one of my videos impedes on their ability to make a living selling it. If anything, it creates interest in the original work. If everyone used creative commons attribution we could bring hollywood to it's knees.

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Poster: guyzilla Date: Jun 18, 2009 5:07pm
Forum: DriveInMovieAds Subject: Re: Drive-In clips removed due to copyright claim

I have quite a few SWV products in my collection (both pre- and post "Image") and though some of this material may be PD, I wouldn't post it because the SWV logo that appears on the screen detracts from the enjoyment of the picture. I also believe that though the film itself may be PD, the logo isn't.

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Poster: FP Date: Aug 12, 2009 1:40pm
Forum: DriveInMovieAds Subject: Re: Drive-In clips removed due to copyright claim

So, just to be clear, the video portion of the drive-in films remaining here are free and clear to use, not including any footage of active trademarks? I know the library music in certain clips is still protected because I've recently heard it when auditioning catalogs.

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Poster: ScreenAttractions Date: Jun 18, 2009 6:41pm
Forum: DriveInMovieAds Subject: Re: Drive-In clips removed due to copyright claim

The licensing of a clip by an entity does not grant mechanical rights to others; people can't copy and freely distribute it as they please. Public domain or not.

As you allude, it boils down to being able to prove which clips are infringing. Our original footage is positively identifiable by the scratches, splices, and other unique markers physically present (and tactile) in particular frames and on the soundtrack. Like a fingerprint, our original film footage can be matched frame-for-frame to the infringing items. So there's no doubt what's ours and what isn't. Note, these are the original 35MM FILM sources, they are not videos... which would be impossible to distinquish the original source without an embedded ID.

Our property has been successfully defended in a growing number of cases and we are slowly having our day in court. Clips that have not been removed yet are either not ours or are still being documented as we discover them. Once more, these subjects are NOT in the public domain. The music alone precludes that (since those libraries are still very much in business - I know, we lease them).

FWIW, the archive footage has never been listed on our website. The bulk of our work is in custom film production (not video). Because of the Something Weird debacle, however, we are now very particular about who we license footage to.

Again, thank you for your consideration.

Sincerely,

Timothy Reed
Screen Attractions

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Poster: Video-Cellar Date: Jun 18, 2009 11:42pm
Forum: DriveInMovieAds Subject: Re: Drive-In clips removed due to copyright claim

The "Chattel" (i.e. physical property related to the copyright in this case film print) is not protected by copyright at all. This is regardless of whether the film was released with or without copyright protection. Copright protects the right to copy the physical work for the period that it is subject to copyright, not into perpetuity. When an audio visual work enters the puplic domain or is released into the public domain the reproduction of the work is not protected by copyright (Bridgeman Art Library Ltd. v. Corel Corporation) regardless of the skill or work that goes into said reproduction (there is no place for a "sweat of the brow" as a basis for copyright claim in US law [Feist Publications v. Rural Telephone Service])

I aggree the music could be an issue. Generally works from this period used in their original context do not constitute an infringement of "underlying" rights (MALJACK PRODUCTIONS, INC. v. GOODTIMES HOME VIDEO CORP. [synchronisation rights to music in motion pictures are encapsulated in the Motion Picture copyright, mechanical rights can be covered by compulsory licensing or by direct arrangement with the publisher as per the law.]). However, if these items were released without the necessary formalities, the visual and non-musical content would definitely be in the Public Domain regardless of the source of the material.

Are you, therefore, saying that these original films were first published in accordance with the copyright formalities of the time and that the copyright, as such, was owned, operated or transferred to Screen Attractions? I can't find any records in the US copyright office related to "Screen Attractions".

I should point out that I haven't contributed to the Drive-In collection. I am just interested in the rationale for the copyright claim knowing that in the past I have been subject to threats of counter claims of copyfraud in instances where I have attempted to assert rights over my own archival stock.

This post was modified by Video-Cellar on 2009-06-19 06:42:01