A Professor Pokes Fun at Copyright

A Professor Pokes Fun at Copyright

Copyright law, a constant thorn in the sides of scholars and researchers, is generating a lot of public discussion this week, thanks in part to a new 10-minute video that parodies the law. “A Fair(y) Use Tale” has been downloaded from YouTube about 145,000 times since it was posted online Friday. The video uses 400 cuts from 27 different Disney films to mock copyright law as overly protective of the interests of copyright owners — Disney among them.

Eric Faden, an assistant professor of English and film studies at Bucknell University, who produced the video with help from seven of his students, said it took eight months to make. “The most important thing is that it’s getting people to talk about these issues” of copyright and fair use, Mr. Faden said today. Worried that Disney may sue him for copyright infringement, Mr. Faden has retained Stanford University lawyers.

Mr. Faden garnered a lot of attention about five years ago when he bought an old movie theater near the Bucknell campus. A nonprofit group now owns the theater, called the Campus, and the university provides money to keep it running. —Andrea L. Foster

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