16 February 2005

Does MSM have Exclusive Claim to Fair Use?

It has taken awhile, but it appears somebody in the MSM has fired a return volley against the blogosphere. Volokh Conspiracy and the Instapundit both have posts regarding BatesLine a blog for pay out of Tulsa OK, that has been sent a threatening letter from the local paper regarding his use of copyrighted material from their paper.

Opinion writers in the MSM use quotes from articles written by others all-the-time, as a basis for their commentary. And it is SOP in academic journals, in order that one might rebut or reinforce another authors point.

I haven't seen the material in question, but if the Fair Use principle applies here, then this is probably just a harassment ploy. Glenn Reynolds opines that this seems lame to him. James Joyner at Outside the Beltway indicates that the paper might have some argument, and his post has the pertinent Fair Use Questions.

Michelle Malkin also has an excellent post here regarding the topic of Fair Use.

The MSM is totally without a clue. Instead of suing bloggers, they should be hiring them. If for nothing else but to cover the blogosphere. Hugh Hewitt has argued this persuasively many times. Serious bloggers have demonstrated, on their own, an ability to be very productive, and with minimal supervision.

And as has been amply demonstrated regarding everything from Dan Rather, through Eason Jordan, and even Jeff Gannon; the serious bloggers are after the truth, or they are standing there to shine light of perspective on what are often intensely slanted pieces coming from the MSM. -SpinDaddy

Update 16FEB05 0902hrs: The blog California Yankee has a great post this topic. It also contains some good links, and this :

" . . . At Wizbang, Kevin Aylward posts the terrific e-mail he sent to Mr. Bair.
In his letter to Mr. Bair, Kevin explains why the Tulsa World's attempt to muzzle Bates is important to the blogoshpere:
Even though you are only targeting a couple small weblogs, when you attempt to silence them you attempt to silence us all..." -Spin