Wednesday, November 10, 2010

CLE event to explore uses of music in political campaigns

Next Wednesday, Nov. 17 I'll be participating in a CLE event that will explore various legal issues related to the use of music in political campaigns. Anyone can participate (for a fee) via telephone conference or live webcast hosted by the ABA. Details below:

The Politics of Fair Use:

A Practical Discussion of Fair Use Principles Using Recent Examples of Popular Music in Political Campaigns

Date: Wednesday, November 17, 2010
Format: Teleconference and Live Audio Webcast
Duration: 60 minutes


The American Bar Association Section of Intellectual Property Law, Forum on the Entertainment and Sports Industries and the ABA Center for Continuing Legal Education

12:30 PM-1:30 PM Eastern

11:30 AM-12:30 PM Central

10:30 AM-11:30 AM Mountain

9:30 AM-10:30 AM Pacific

Program Description

Recently, high profile politicians including John McCain, Charlie Crist, and Chuck DeVore have had lawsuits brought against them for using the music of famous musicians such as Jackson Browne, David Byrne, and Don Henley in their campaigns without receiving the necessary permissions and licenses. What rights do politicians have to use popular music at their live events and in advertisements? Are such uses a "fair use"? Our expert panel will discuss these issues and use them as a means to review principles of the Fair Use doctrine.

Program Faculty

Robert Clarida (Moderator) is the partner in charge of the copyright practice at the New York firm of Cowan, Liebowitz & Latman, P.C., which was named “Copyright Firm of the Year” for both 2008 and 2009 by Managing Intellectual Property magazine. He has conducted jury trials, argued federal appeals, and served as lead litigation counsel in a number of reported federal copyright cases. He also counsels clients on non-litigious copyright matters, and has been the principal drafter of amicus curiae briefs on copyright matters in the U.S. Supreme Court and a number of Circuits, on behalf of organizations including the AIPLA, the Motion Picture Association of America, the New York City Bar Association, and the Recording Industry Association of America. Mr. Clarida speaks and writes frequently on copyright issues, is the author of the treatise Copyright Law Deskbook (BNA 2009), and the principal author of the annual review of copyright decisions published each year by the Journal of the Copyright Society of the USA.

Jacqueline C. Charlesworth is of counsel in the litigation department in the New York office of Morrison & Foerster LLP. Ms. Charlesworth's practice focuses on copyright law in the digital environment. She represents media, entertainment, and other clients in litigation, legislative, regulatory, and transactional matters. In addition to handling infringement matters, she has negotiated industry-wide licensing agreements to facilitate the development of online music services. She advises on copyright-related legislation and appears in proceedings before the
U.S. Copyright Office.

Ben Sheffner is a copyright/First Amendment/media/entertainment attorney and former journalist. Currently senior counsel, Legal Affairs in the NBC Universal Television Group, Mr. Sheffner has also worked as senior counsel, Content Protection Litigation at Twentieth Century Fox, as litigation counsel in the NBC Universal Television Group, and as an associate in the Century City office of O'Melveny & Myers LLP. From July-November 2008, Mr. Sheffner served as special counsel on Senator John McCain's presidential campaign where, among other responsibilities, he handled the campaign's copyright, trademark, and other intellectual property issues. Mr. Sheffner blogs at, which was recently named as one of the top 100 legal blogs by the American Bar Association, and writes a regular column on legal issues in the music industry for the Billboard.

Andrew Sparkler is the associate director, Legal Corporate at the American Society of Composers Authors and Publishers ("ASCAP") where he focuses on legislative and international issues, as well as providing legal support to ASCAP's internal departments and The ASCAP Foundation. He is a co-chair of the New York Chapter of the Copyright Society of the U.S.A. In 2009, he was named the New York State Bar Association's "Outstanding Young Lawyer." Mr. Sparkler received his law degree from the Fordham University School of Law and his undergraduate degree from Brown University.

CLE Credit

1.0 hours of CLE credit in 60-minute states/1.2 hours of CLE credit in 50-minute states have been requested in states accrediting ABA teleconferences and live audio webcasts.*

NY-licensed attorneys: This non-transitional CLE program has been approved for experienced NY-licensed attorneys in accordance with the requirements of the New York State CLE Board for1.0 total NY CLE credits.

The following states accept ABA teleconferences for CLE credit:

*States currently not accrediting ABA teleconferences: DE, IN, PA, KS, OH

Click here to view a map of MCLE states

1 comment:

  1. While it does not address the issue of fair use, a Note on the use of music by political campaigns was recently published in the Cardozo Law Review, available here:


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