Techdirt reports on the pending copyright infringement lawsuit in the Southern District of New York between TufAmerica and rapper Jay-Z over the latter’s use of a sample in his song “Run This Town.” The issue in the case, TufAmerica, Inc. v. WB Music Corp. et al., is whether a sample of a one-syllable spoken word (the word “oh”) can constitute copyright infringement. In a motion to dismiss filed last week, Jay-Z’s lawyers argued that a single word does not qualify as copyrightable expression, and that even if that single word was protectable under the Copyright Act, the copying by Jay-Z was too minimal to be actionable. The case is being watched closely by industry observers for its potential implications for the use of short samples in sound recordings. Read the full article here, and the Defendant’s Memorandum of Law in Support of Their Motion to Dismiss here.
Reposted from Techdirt.