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First off today, Ashley Cullins at The Hollywood Reporter Esquire reports that Pure Flix Entertainment and David A.R. White have been sued for copyright infringement by screenwriter Kelly Kullberg, who claims that her screenplay is the real inspiration behind the film God is Not Dead.
According to Kullberg the 2014 Christian film God is Not Dead is based on her 2006 autobiography Finding God Beyond Harvard: The Quest for Veritas, which she in turn made into a screenplay entitled Rise. However, Rise has not been put into production and Kullberg blames God is Not Dead for that. As such, she is seeking at least $100 million in damages.
Kullberg claims that there many overlapping themes between the two including the theme of a young college student challenging a popular atheist professor that later received support from various third parties. She also claims that Pure Flix learned about the plot from a chain of individuals who shared it with one another without her permission.
Next up today, Andy at Torrentfreak writes that YouTuber Lewis Bond is being sued by Serendip LLC, an organization that owns the rights to compositions by Wendy Carlos, who composed the soundtracks to two Stanley Kubrick films, A Clockwork Orange and The Shining.
According to the lawsuit, Bond posted a 20-minute video on YouTube that analyzed Stanley Kubrick films and, as part of that, included parts of Carlos’ songs in the video. Serendip had filed a Digital Millennium Copyright Act takedown notice against the video but Bond filed a counter-notice claiming that the video was a fair use. According to the filing, it’s that counter-notice that prompted the lawsuit.
The case was filed in New York but Bond is based in the UK. The lawsuit is seeking the maximum statutory damages, $150,000 and an injunction against the reuploading of the video.
3: SoundExchange Calls for Appeal of New Webcasting Rates, Saying They ‘Erode the Value of Music In Our Economy’
Finally today, Ed Christman at Billboard reports that Soundexchange, the performance rights organization responsible for collecting and distributing performance royalties for non-interactive digital transmissions of music (IE: Pandora and Satellite radio) has announced it plans to appeal an earlier Copyright Royalty Board decision that it feels set the royalty rate too low.
The Copyright Royalty Board recently set the rate of $0.0017 for free streaming and $0.0023 for paid streaming. The rates represented a modest increase on free streaming rates and a small decrease in paid streaming. The rates, if upheld, will apply through the end of 2020.
However, SoundExchange filed it’s appeal at the end of a 30-day waiting period following a reevaluation by the Copyright Royalty Board. According to SoundExchange, the rate simply does not reflect the market value for music currently will erode the music if it’s allowed to stand.
That’s it for the three count today. We will be back tomorrow with three more copyright links. If you have a link that you want to suggest a link for the column or have any proposals to make it better. Feel free to leave a comment or send me an email. I hope to hear from you.