Documentary Filmmakers, Rejoice!

Yes, it’s always important to respect other artist’s hard (hard!) work to make a film, produce and distribute a DVD. This much is true.

However, as documenatry filmmakers, we have reason to thank God for a new opening in resources that could change everything… if we’re careful to learn the best practices of Fair Use Doctrine!

Here’s the official government page on the doctrine. (FL-102, Revised May 2009)

Well, the big news came out a few weeks ago that University of Southern California Law students from the USC Intellectual Property and Technology Clinic won a copyright exemption in the 1998 Digital Millennium Copyright Act (DMCA). The announcement was made on July 26, 2010, by the United States Copyright Office.

This is especially helpful for documentary Movie Makers and Shakers for Yeshua! As long as we abide by Fair Use Doctrine, we are now FREE to use any DVD we own or can buy in plotting out our documentary stories.

Whether educational, revelational, investigative, critical or to add that touch of modern idiom to our dramatic storytelling (picture a TV announcing the news or showing an excerpt of another fictional film), we are now free to explore (somewhat) vicariously through other artists and storytellers throughout this “information age.”

We’re NOT talking about Youtube copycatters here. We’re talking about using best practices for film production starting with a script! But, now, our script is free from worrying (too much – Fair Use Doctrine still strictly applies) whether any such iconoclastic reference to another film or documentary will be allowable by law.

More from the University of Southern California here – http://lawold.usc.edu/news/article.cfm?newsID=3604

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