31
Jul/02

My Friends All Drive Porsches, I Must Make Amends


The Ninth Circuit in Mattel, noting that song titles tend not to be perceived as designating origin, finds that “. . . upon hearing Janis Joplin croon ‘Oh Lord, won’t you buy me a Mercedes-Benz?’ would we suspect that she and the carmaker had entered into a joint venture.”  Sure, baby boomers aware of her psychedelic Porsche would not, but those who knew that the posthumous copyright owner licensed the song to Mercedes might suspect it, as would those who purchased the song as a ringtone for their Nokia phone.

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