July 29, 2004

JibJab Jabbed by Lawyers

The owners of Woody Guthrie's song "This Land" are taking legal action, amazingly, against the creators of the brilliant parody of the song on jibjab.com (mentioned here a few days ago).

The publishers of the song seem to be completely ignorant of fair use doctrine. The jibjab creation is so obviously protected by fair use that it's totally ludicrous that anyone who knows anything about IP law would even consider a law suit against it.

Sounds like a classic case of lawyers who should know better, who probably do know better, but know they can clock in a few billable hours writing some scary letters that are totally without legal validity.

UPDATE, August 2: Today NPR's Neal Conan interviewed Arlo Guthrie, Woody's son, about the issue.

Posted by steev at July 29, 2004 07:26 AM