The current enforcement method of the fair use doctrine is not suitable to handle the ever-evolving music industry. The fair use doctrine allows a copyright protected work to be used without getting it approved by the original owner of the work. This is seen often in music sampling. Music sampling is extremely prevalent in today’s music industry; however, federal court is currently the only arena that sampling disputes can be resolved in. This has led to inconsistencies across circuits, unfairness, and exacerbated the backlog of the federal court docket. While many have pointed out both the inefficiency and unfairness of the current enforcement method of the fair use doctrine, the legislature has refused to make any changes to The Copyright Act since 1976. This Note considers how the fair use doctrine can keep up with the increase in music sampling, without having to amend the Copyright Act. Instead of federal court being the only arena for copyright disputes, an independent agency, modeled after current federal agencies, should conduct fair and impartial investigations into copyright infringement.
NOT SO FAIR USE: THE SHORTCOMINGS OF CURRENT COPYRIGHT LAW IN MUSIC SAMPLING,
15 Brook. J. Corp. Fin. & Com. L.
Available at: https://brooklynworks.brooklaw.edu/bjcfcl/vol15/iss2/5