Most recently revised: March 31, 2015
University of Michigan
(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.)
- 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)
- A copy of the Copyright statute (available here, here, here, here, here, or here)
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.
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.
No laptops are allowed in class.
- January 14, 15:
- Casebook, pages 3-42
- Supplement page 5-6
- Spend a bunch of time exploring the links posted at http://www.umich.edu/~jdlitman/classes/copyright/copyref.html. Read an example of recently introduced legislation and try to figure out what it seeks to accomplish. Identify a congenial blog and plan to look in on it once or more each week.
- January 21, 22:
- Casebook, pages 45-81
- Supplement, pages 7-10
- 17 USC §§ 101, 102
- January 26, 28, 29:
- Guest Lecture: Cindy Cohn, Electronic Frontier Foundation, Wednesday January 28
- Casebook, pages 81-118
- Supplement, Pages 10-11
- 17 USC §§ 101, 102, 103, 201, 202
- 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.
- Read the Complaint in Rentmeester v. Nike.
- If you are interested in learning more about the EFF’s copyright work, you can read about it here, here, here, here, here and here.
- February 4, 5:
- Snow Day February 2
- Casebook, pages 118-53
- Supplement, pages 11-13
- 17 USC §§ 101, 102, 104, 104A, 105, 201, 204, 401, 402, 403, 404, 405, 406, 407, 408
- February 9, 11, 12, 13:
- Guest Lecture, Monday February 9: Sarang Damle, Deputy General Counsel, U.S. Copyright Office
- Makeup class, Friday February 13, 2:45 - 4:00 pm, room 1020 SH
- Problem Set (We will discuss the problems in class at the end of Chapter 3 of the Casebook)
- Casebook, pages 153-56, 158-89
- Supplement pages 13-22
- 17 USC §§ 101, 102, 203, 302, 303, 304, 305, 401, 402, 403, 404, 405, 406, 407, 408, 409, 410, 411, 412
- Register a copyright
- Skim Chapter 6 of the COMPENDIUM OF COPYRIGHT OFFICE PRACTICES
- Search for a book in Hathitrust
- Lolly Gasaway’s chart: When Works Pass Into the Public Domain
- Explore Creative Commons Labs’ CC Termination of Transfer Tool (Beta)
- February 16, 18, 19:
- Problem Set (continued; when we stopped on Friday we were in the middle of Problem # viii)
- Casebook, pages 191-255
- Supplement pages 23-25, 36-42
- 17 USC §§ 101, 102, 113, 117, 120
- Look at some bicycle racks in downtown Ann Arbor:
- See images of other bicycle rack designs on Pinterest
- Is Mia Cinelli’s Loop a copyrightable sculpture? How about Cinelli’s other works? (The Weight? As it Was? Fayette? Bags to Riches? Infinitea?)
- Skim Chapter 9 of the COMPENDIUM OF COPYRIGHT OFFICE PRACTICES
- 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:
- Casebook, pages 255-58, 263-302
- Supplement pages 25-43(including both Oracle v. Google at pp. 36-42 and Warner Bros. v. X One X at pp. 25-35)
- 17 USC §§ 106, 120, 501
- Check out Brian Joseph Davis’s The Composites
- Watch Kelly Wilson’s The Snowman
- Watch the trailer for Disney’s Frozen
- Read Wilson’s Complaint and Disney’s Answer
- Compare the Chiffons’ recording of He’s So Fine by Ronald Mack with George Harrison singing My Sweet Lord
- Compare the sheet music for Gordon Lightfoot’s If You Could Read My Mind with the sheet music for The Greatest Love of All by Michael Masser & Linda Creed
- March 9, 11, 12:
- Casebook, pages 302-58
- Supplement pages 43-57, 61-63
- 17 USC §§ 106, 109, 602
- Statutory Drafting Exercise (due March 13, bring to class Monday March 16)
- Listen to the songs at issue in Arnstein v. Porter
- See and listen to the files that Professor Jamie Lund used in her Empirical Examination of the Lay Listener Test In Music Composition Copyright Infringment.
- Watch some H.R. Pufnstuff here or here. Then watch McDonaldland commercials here, here, here, and here.
- Read Casey Rae’s discussion of the Thicke v. Gaye verdict for the Future of Music Coalition.
- Read the jury instructions in the case
- March 16, 18, 19:
- Statutory Drafting Exercise (class discussion of the drafts that you turned in on March 13)
- Casebook, pages 365-93, 398-416
- Supplement pages 64-79, 57-59
- 17 USC §§ 106, 106A, 110, 111
- Explore the Archive of Our Own. Search for and then read a story (you don't need an invitation to read, only to post works).
- March 23, 25, 26:
- Guest Lecture, Monday March 23: Jeff Cunard, Debevoise & Plimpton
- Casebook, pages 421-51
- Supplement pages 59-60, 70-81
- 17 USC §§ 110, 111, 114, 115
- Even more optional: For a more detailed understanding of the complications of music copyright licensing, skim Judge Cote’s March 14, 2014 opinion in In re Petition of Pandora, Inc.
- March 30, April 1, 2:
- Casebook, pages 451-505, 514-518, 525-34
- Supplement pages 80-105
- 17 USC §§ 107, 114, 501, 506, 512, , 1001, 1002, 1003, 1008
- Statutory Drafting Exercise due Monday March 30 at 5:30 pm
- Visit chillingeffects.org. Look around.
- April 6, 8, 9:
- Guest Lecture, Wednesday April 8: Brian Willen, Wilson Sonsini Goodrich & Rosati
- Casebook, pages 534-557, 560-603
- Supplement pages 106-128
- 17 USC § 107, 201, 202
- April 13, 15, 16:
- Casebook, pages 605-32, 640-55
- Supplement pages 129-41
- 17 USC §§ 201, 202, 204, 301
- Statutory Drafting Exercise due Monday, April 13, at 5:30 pm
- 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 655-92
- Supplement pages 143-51
- 17 USC §§ 501, 502, 503, 504, 505, 507, 1201, 1202
- Read the U.S. Copyright Office F.A.Q.: Understanding the Section 1201 Anticircumvention Rulemaking Proceeding
- Explore some of the exemptions that individuals and organizations are seeking.