Fair Use and Copyright Law

@MyDtcAccount – Jonathan Crabtree

Fair use and copyright laws protect the owners of original content, but, sometimes, they also strangle out creativity from other people. Many people have to be very careful when working with original pieces of…well, just about anything. In the “Star Wars Saga” video, the creator used many different clips of star wars film and played them along with a techno song. Honestly, the result was not very well done, in my opinion. The clips jumped all over the place from movie to movie, and there was no story told. That said, the reason the author didn’t place them in chronological order is probably because, if he did, he could be violating the fair use laws by recreating an idea. Fair use laws protect the owner, but hurt future creators.


The star wars fan film is a little different. It doesn’t take any actual footage from the movies, but it is obviously taking the ideas behind the series. Having a jedi, a Darth Maul look-alike, and going after “the force” would, I think, violate copyright laws. Copyrights don’t only protect against the actual physical material, but it protects ideas and concepts from being copied, which is exactly what happened. It is ultimately up to the federal courts to decide whether or not it was a violation, but I really don’t see how it couldn’t be one. If an individual has seen star wars, they immediately can tell that that is what the fan film is referencing, which, if you can do that, it’s probably a copyright violation.

Comments are closed.