Most recently revised: December 18, 2014

University of Michigan
Law 633
Copyright Law
Winter 2015

Tentative Syllabus

 

(This syllabus will change frequently. It's a good idea to check back here after each class to find added links, optional excursions, and revised assignments.)

Required Texts:

  • Julie E. Cohen, Lydia Pallas Loren, Ruth Gana Okediji & Maureen A, O'Rourke, COPYRIGHT IN A GLOBAL INFORMATION ECONOMY (3d edition 2010)
  • Cohen, Loren Okediji and O’Rourke 2013 Case SUPPLEMENT with 2014 Update (free download)
    • (This is a combined filed. You can find the Authors’ 2013 Case Supplement here and the 2014 update files here.)
  • A copy of the Copyright statute (available here, here, here, here, here, or here)

Online resources:

I have posted a website for this course at www.umich.edu/~jdlitman/classes/copyright.htm. The website includes this syllabus page, a page with links to references, news, announcements, and items of curiosity, and a page with recommendations for further optional reading. You should consult the site frequently. I will post revised versions of the syllabus and copies of class handouts here.

The authors of your casebook have posted a website at http://www.coolcopyright.com/ with content keyed to the book. It includes links to the unedited version of each case, and useful resources and updates.

Examination:

The exam in this course will be a 48-hour, take-home examination. During the examination you may consult the casebook, the combined 2013-14 supplement, your copy of the copyright statute, a dictionary of the English language, and your own notes. You may not consult any other sources.

Laptop policy:

No laptops are allowed in class.

 

Assignments:

  • January 14, 15:
  • January 21, 22:
    • Casebook, pages 45-81
    • Supplement, pages 7-10
    • 17 USC §§ 101, 102
    • Optional:
      • View Screenshots of Midway’s Defender and Artic’s Defense Command
      • View more images of the posters at issue in the Bleistein case here, here and here
      • View photographs of Chapman Kelley’s Wildflower Works
      • Purchase a signed, limited edition of Aram Saroyan’s poem from The Paris Review for $1000.00

  • January 26, 28, 29:
    • Guest Lecture: Cindy Cohn, Electronic Frontier Foundation (tentative)
    • Casebook, pages 81-124
    • Supplement, Pages 10-11
    • 17 USC §§ 101, 102, 103, 201, 202
    • Optional:
      • Skim Chapter 3 and Chapter 5 of the COMPENDIUM OF COPYRIGHT OFFICE PRACTICES
      • Read Pamela Samuelson, The Story of Baker v. Selden: Sharpening the Distinction between Authorship and Invention, in INTELLECTUAL PROPERTY STORIES (2006) (on course reserve), or online here or here.

  • February 2, 4, 5:
  • February 9, 11, 12:
  • February 16, 18, 19:
    • Casebook, pages 215-58, 262-86
    • Supplement pages 36-42, 25-35
    • 17 USC §§ 101, 102, 106, 117, 120
    • Check out Brian Joseph Davis’s The Composites
    • Optional:
      • Spend some time exploring the architecture of South Hall at the Law School Building Project page. Then, take fifteen minutes to look at the expression of that architecture in the actual building. What does the architects’ copyright protect?
      • Hartman-Cox also designed the bridge that connects the 3d floor of Hutchins Hall with the 7th floor of the Cook Legal Research building. Find the bridge and check it out, both from the outside and from the inside. Is the bridge an architectural work? Why or why not? If it is, what does Hartman-Cox’s copyright protect?

  • February 23, 25, 26:
  • March 9, 11, 12:
    • Casebook, pages 341-58, 365-93, 398-411
    • Supplement page 61-63, 44-57
    • 17 USC §§ 106, 106A, 109, 602
    • Statutory Drafting Exercise
    • Optional: Explore the Archive of Our Own (you don't need an invitation to read, only to post works)

  • March 16, 18, 19:
  • March 23, 25, 26:
  • March 30, April 1, 2:
  • April 6, 8, 9:
  • April 13, 15, 16:
  • April 20, 22:
    • Bring your laptops to class on Monday, April 20, to complete teaching evaluations during the first 15 minutes of class
    • Casebook pages 763-800, 809-12, 831-34, 836-38
    • Supplement pages 164-67, 158-63
    • 17 USC §§ 501, 502, 503, 504, 505, 507
    • Handout