January 31, 2005


A potentially rhetorically useful observation:

Lessig has been talking lately about how “fair use is the right to hire a lawyer”, meaning that the application of the Fair Use Doctrine is so unpredictable and uneven that prospective fair users without lawyers can seldom be certain that they’re applying the doctrine properly. Further, even if the user applies the doctrine properly, the analysis is sufficiently fact-intensive and subjective that a copyright holder will generally have a legally cognizable claim against even a legitimate fair user. The fair user will sometimes have to hire a lawyer to defend an infringement suit even if they’ve done everything right. Knowing this, even legitimate fair use is likely to be chilled by the risks involved.

Is it not fitting, then, that the Fair Use Doctrine fits the acronym FUD?

Disclaimer Haiku:
West wind seems to say,
"This is not legal advice;
I'm not your lawyer."

(And if you're a client with whom I have a preexisting attorney-client relationship, this still isn't legal advice.)

In case you're wondering, this blog is also not intended as advertising, as a representation of anything but my personal opinion, or as an offer of representation.

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