Tuesday, March 20, 2012

Stacking it up...

Taking cue from the questions that Sai left off at, in one of his earlier posts- “” Does copyright law preclude the possibility of a book with a single-quote being bought and read by people? Also, does “literary work” always mean a “book”?”, ticks off my mind, to think more so in a social networking context.

In a world where many of us live a part of our lives in a virtual world, what is the role that Copyright plays? We all leave status updates, wall posts, tweets etc.- sometimes rattling off statements that are nothing short of brilliant. Would these posts qualify for copyright protection? To be honest, I do not have a clear cut answer.

As I see it, what one may post, may often be an expression of a thought - which perhaps can be construed to be an idea, or at least its equivalent. But would that be construed as a subject matter capable of copyright protection?

Drawing a contrasting analogy (and perhaps even contradicting myself), why is it that we always refer quotes to the people they come from? It definitely is a sort of goodwill gesture, but may be beyond. Additionally the need for accreditation in the academic context, also leaves me confused, since fair dealing clearly covers academic contexts.

Further, what if one wrote a sentence each day to construct a story or poem, say over a couple of months or a year on a social networking platform? A collective reading of these, could at least be treated as a compilation.

Although this reminds me of the Feist case, the differentiator could be that the line by line breakdown of a telephone directory takes us to facts, unlike the hypothetical situation. In this view, with at least a minimum modicum of creativity being met, copyright must vest.

In my mind, the questions are stacking up!!! I eagerly look forward to a court rendering its view, just to clear the air up a bit!

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