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Filmmakers' unfair argument against 'fair use'

John Diaz, editorial page editor at the San Francisco Chronicle weighs in on the censoring taking place from the overreach by copyright maximalists combined with fuzzy fair use guidelines.

His full editorial is well worth a read here:

http://www.sfgate.com/cgi-bin/article.cgi?f=/c/a/2011/03/20/INMS1IBQU2.DTL

The opening paragraphs...

"Slaying the Dragon: Reloaded," a compelling new documentary that critiques the portrayal of Asian women in U.S. visual media, has drawn protests from an unlikely quarter. It wasn't from Hollywood, which was deservedly scoured for its depiction of Asian women in films from "Rush Hour 2" to "Sex and the City." It wasn't from conservative commentators claiming political correctness run amok.

Instead, the objection to the documentary by Elaine Kim, a UC Berkeley professor of Asian American studies, emerged from six Asian American filmmakers just before its premiere last week at the San Francisco International Asian American Film Festival. Their complaint: that she used clips of their work without seeking their permission.

Yet there are some who still insist that the current copyright regime doesn't pose a censorship problem (or minimize the importance of censorship if it doesn't involve grievances directed at the government). Presumably, these critics would consider documentarian Elaine Kim a free speech "opportunist" in her criticism of the current copyright regime.


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