Monday, October 08, 2007

Copyright gone mad

Copyright law just keeps getting nuttier and nuttier, and Edgar has choice words for those who try to push it too far.

See also: The dark side of copyright law (5/5/06) and More on copyright law (4/11/07).
When it discovered that Robert Ronson's children's science-fiction novel was to be published, the organising committee for the previously mentioned happening sent him an email asking that he should use neither the O-word nor the expressions "London 2012, or 2012 etc" in the title. The committee was able to do so under statutes passed in 1995 and 2006, which in effect turn all the elements of its title into a trademark.

In claiming copyright on a word, the organisation dedicated to the promotion of the competition to be held two years into the next decade is both following and extending a dangerous trend. ...

...The email to Robert Ronson was written by the Olympic organising committee's manager of brand protection, concerned to "ensure that there was no confusion" as to whether the novel was "an official licenced product", presumably in case the committee seeks to declare Ian McEwan or Martin Amis official novelist to the 2012 Olympics at some point.

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