In this transcription of a symposium on the changing rights of the artist, Jonathan Band (partner at Morrison and Foerster), Rebecca Tushnet (Asst. Professor at NYU Law School), and Eugene Mopsik (Executive Director of the American Society of Media Photographers) discuss the rights of the directors whose films are edited by ClearPlay technology. Band recounts the comments of various lobbyists and political figures testifying on the Family Entertainment and Copyright Act, stating that the Register of Copyrights argued against the bill because users have the choice to buy a product and should simply refrain from buying an offensive product rather than disrespect the vision of the author. Jack Valente also testified against the bill because he felt that the technology indeed infringes on the derivative work right because the software could be designed to skip not just offensive content, but any content. Mopsik addresses the concern that viewers attribute the features and feel of the edited work to the director’s vision. Lastly, Tushnet acknowledged that there is a “spectrum” of acceptable editing (ClearPlay is acceptable while CleanFlicks is not), and that consumers watching a CleanFlicks DVD have the same experience as consumers watching a ClearPlay DVD.
This piece supports my thesis as it discusses some of the immediate political reaction to the legislation that legalized ClearPlay. Even though FECA is now a law, the arguments made above against the legislation are still valid, particularly Valente’s argument. Mopsik’s discussion of attribution is more in depth than those in other articles, which mostly discuss whether or not a consumer knows the film is edited, and instead analyzes who the vision belongs to rather than who has the right to decide the vision.