Tales From The Public Domain: BOUND BY LAW? is a project of Duke University’s Center for the Study of the Public Domain. It is a look at the battlefield that is intellectual property law told through the eyes of a documentary filmmaker. The comic is quite insightful and does point out the insanity and ridiculousness that make up today’s copyright laws.
A documentary is being filmed. A cell phone rings, playing the “Rocky” theme song. The filmmaker is told she must pay $10,000 to clear the rights to the song. Can this be true? “Eyes on the Prize,” the great civil rights documentary, was pulled from circulation because the filmmakers’ rights to music and footage had expired. What’s going on here? It’s the collision of documentary filmmaking and intellectual property law, and it’s the inspiration for this new comic book. Follow its heroine Akiko as she films her documentary, and navigates the twists and turns of intellectual property.
My thanks to John August for the pointer.