Kevin Goldberg

Kevin Goldberg Mr. Goldberg’s expertise is in First Amendment, Freedom of Information Act, and intellectual property issues, particularly copyright and trademark matters encountered by content creators and users.

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Pre-1972 Fight with a Twist: Georgia Supreme Court Exempts Internet Streaming from State Record Piracy Statute

(Court also compares Internet Radio to Terrestrial Under State Law) A Georgia Supreme Court decision on a narrow issue relating to the use of pre-1972 sound recordings creates an interesting new topic for discussion in this area, even as the holding in this case is itself necessarily limited to Georgia. The case is iHeartMedia v.Sheridan, … Continue Reading

FilmOn X Loses in Latest Bid to be a Cable System

Ninth Circuit is the latest to say that Internet-based services are not cable systems. Remember Aereo? Sure you do, if you were a regular CommLawBlog reader pretty much anytime between 2012 and 2015. Aereo was the upstart looking to revolutionize the way cord-cutters watched TV: its dime-sized antennas were designed to receive and capture local … Continue Reading

Webcaster Wake Up Call!

SoundExchange reports, payments due soon On February 2nd the groundhog best known as “Punxsutawney Phil” will be plucked from the comfort of his underground lair and ceremoniously asked to “predict” the end of winter.  Of course, this tradition was memorably portrayed in the 1993 movie “Groundhog Day” in which Bill Murray’s Phil Connors relives a … Continue Reading

Radio Music License Committee and Global Music Rights Reach Interim License Agreement

(Stations Fearing a Difficult Choice Before January 1 now have until January 31 to opt in to an interim license agreement and continue playing GMR songs through September.) If you are a radio station, especially a commercial radio station primarily playing music, you are probably aware of the dueling lawsuits filed by the Radio Music … Continue Reading

Employers (and some Employees) Thankful as Federal Court Stays New Overtime Laws

For the past few months, business owners have been frantically preparing for a major change in the Department of Labor (DOL) regulations implementing the Fair Labor Standards Act (FLSA) which would greatly increase the number of employees eligible to receive overtime pay for work in excess of 40 hour per week.   These changes, were due … Continue Reading

Copyright Office DMCA Proceeding Asks: It’s 2016, so why are we Copyrighting Like It’s 1999?

(Notice of Inquiry latest opportunity to weigh in on the future of the DMCA Safe Harbor) “I was dreamin’ when I wrote this, so sue me if I go too fast…” Those are lyrics from the dearly beloved and extremely talented musician Prince’s epic 1982 hit “1999” from the album of the same name.  He … Continue Reading

NAB Announces Waiver Agreements with Sony and Warner Affecting Non-Royalty Aspects of Webcasting

On October 26, 2016, the National Association of Broadcasters (NAB) announced agreements it had reached with two major record labels that relieve radio broadcasters from certain compliance conditions associated with the sound recording streaming statutory license that are inconsistent with traditional broadcasting practices.  They do not, however, alter radio broadcasters’ royalty payment obligations under the … Continue Reading

Redskins “Offensive” Line May be Tested by Supreme Court

By agreeing to hear “The Slants” case, Court may decide whether USPTO can cancel “Redskins” trademark registrations. [Blogmeister’s Note: To say our blogger, Kevin “The Swami” Goldberg, is opinionated is something of an understatement. One particular bug up his butt: the NFL team which is titularly Washington, D.C.’s, even though it practices in Virginia and … Continue Reading

ASNE “Legal Hotline” Features FHH’s Kevin Goldberg

News Editors’ website highlights post addressing permissible media use of “user-generated” photo/video content obtained from social media and other Internet sources. I’m fortunate to represent a number of press-related trade associations. As part of my work for them, I provide a “Legal Hotline” service through which association members get to ask me questions without incurring massive … Continue Reading

Student Discount: FOIA “Educational Institution” Fee Exemption Available to Students

D.C. Circuit reverses longstanding – if illogical – policy of many agencies. The federal Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) and its state equivalents remain a useful tool for anyone wishing to keep an eye on our governments’ activities. FOIA requests have led to the exposure of waste, fraud and abuse in government programs. Such revelations, … Continue Reading

Question: When is a Pre-1972 Recording Not a Pre-1972 Recording?

Answer: Unclear, but it could be more often that you might think. In the ongoing litigation over whether recording artists are entitled to performance right royalties for the public performance of pre-February 15, 1972 recordings, we have a new wrinkle. A federal judge in the U.S. District Court for the Central District of California has … Continue Reading

Update: Deadline for Appeals of CRB’s Webcasting IV Decision Set

Back in December I reported on the Final Rule and Order adopted by the Copyright Royalty Board in its Webcasting IV proceeding (official name: “Determination of Royalty Rates and Terms for Ephemeral Recording and Webcasting Digital Performance of Sound Recordings”. And now, a mere four or five months after the CRB first announced its decision (which … Continue Reading

Labor Looking to Lift “Exempt Employee” Dollar Limits

Ranks of those eligible for minimum wage and time-and-a-half for overtime could swell with anticipated change in Department of Labor definition of “exempt employee” If you’re an employer or an employee, you’ll want to read this. The Department of Labor is in the process of reviewing its definition of “exempt employee” for purposes of the … Continue Reading

Drones and Newsgathering? Now May Not Be The Best Time …

But legislation currently in the works could improve prospects considerably. It seems like everybody’s been talking about drones and the myriad ways that they will make our lives better. Even we here in the CommLawBlog bunker have devoted considerable attention to the topic (although we’re trying to get our readers used to the proper terminology: … Continue Reading

Webcaster Wake-Up Call! SoundExchange Reports and Payments Due Soon

Same as it ever was: as they start in on the next five-year period with new rates and terms announced in Webcasting IV, webcasters must again attend to annual SoundExchange homework. It’s been a month since I wrote about Webcasting IV, the decision of the Copyright Royalty Board that set webcasting rates and terms for … Continue Reading

Meanwhile, on the East Coast: D.C. Court Rejects FilmOn X Claim to Compulsory License

But District Court decision could be key to a return to the Supreme Court for Aereo-related issues FilmOn X’s fortunes have taken a turn for the worse. But for FilmOn X, that might not be a totally bad thing. Longtime readers will be familiar with FilmOn X, the Aereo doppelganger. When Aereo burst on the … Continue Reading

SESAC Seeks to Sidestep Settlement

Dueling letters from SESAC and RMLC offer distinct alternatives for radio stations in their dealings with SESAC As we reported several months ago, in July the Radio Music License Committee (RMLC) reached a settlement agreement with SESAC that resolved RMLC’s antitrust lawsuit against SESAC and brought some measure of certainty and stability to the license … Continue Reading

Dancing Baby in the Ninth Circuit: A Twist on Takedowns

DMCA requires consideration of “fair use” before infringement can be alleged. Thanks to digital technology, copyright infringement is easier than ever – and the Internet provides a tempting place to display infringing uses of copyrighted material. Recognizing that, Congress passed the Digital Millennium Copyright Act (DMCA), creating a simple mechanism by which copyright owners could … Continue Reading
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