As a result, Liberation, who distribute Phoenix’s music in Australia and New Zealand put a take down notice on the Youtube video and threatened to sue Lessig. As a result Lessig sued the company for “misuse of copyright law”. According to Billboard the case has been settled amicably outside of court.
Now, Phoenix have written the following statement on their blog:
“We support fair use of our music!
We were upset to find out that a lecture by Professor Lawrence Lessig titled ‘Open’ was removed from YouTube without review, under the mistaken belief that it infringed our copyright interests.
This lecture about fair-use included—as examples—bits of spontaneous fan videos using our song “Lisztomania”.
Not only do we welcome the illustrative use of our music for educational purposes, but, more broadly, we encourage people getting inspired and making their own versions of our songs and videos and posting the result online.
One of the great beauties of the digital era is to liberate spontaneous creativity—it might be a chaotic space of free association sometimes but the contemporary experience of digital re-meditation is enormously liberating.
We don’t feel the least alienated by this; appropriation and recontextualization is a long-standing behavior that has just been made easier and more visible by the ubiquity of the internet.
In a few words:
We absolutely support fair use of our music.
And we can only encourage a new copyright policy that protects fair use as much as every creators’ legitimate interests.