Re: [Videolib] "Bolivia" (Fair use of videos)

Marilyn Huntley (mhuntley@hamilton.edu)
Wed, 02 Feb 2005 15:56:26 -0500

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Aha! You're talking about "Bolivia" from Cinema Tropical. We've had some
experience with that film. During the summer of 2003, a professor wanted
our library to buy a copy of the videotape to keep in our collection. In
addition, she wanted to hold a public showing in September.

Cinema Tropical was the only source for the video, so our library purchased
it from them for $295. Then, in order to use it for a public showing, we
also had to purchase a public performance license for $300, which was good
for ONLY THAT ONE DATE. I'm pasting immediately below portions of the
correspondence I received at that time from Cinema Tropical.
Marilyn Huntley

>>>>Date: Mon, 09 Jun 2003 00:51:48 -0400
>>>>From: rebeca@cinematropical.com
>>>>Subject: RE: Public showing of "Bolivia" video?
>>>>X-Originating-IP: 207.93.59.118
>>>>To: mhuntley@hamilton.edu
>>>>
>>>>Dear Marilyn,
>>>>
>>>>Thank you for your e-mails.... You actually CAN buy an institutional
>>>>video cassette of BOLIVIA, we just haven't released it on home video
>>>>yet, but libraries and schools can purchase a copy for $295.00. As you
>>>>know, this copy can be kept in the library for individula study use and
>>>>can also be used in a closed classroom environment for no further charge.
>>>>
>>>>However, to have an open screening of it--open to more than just the
>>>>students registered in a particular class--you will have to purchase an
>>>>additional public performance license. This license, which is $300, is
>>>>NOT a blanket license, meaning that it is only valid for a one time
>>>>only screening, and if someone else wanted to show the film again in,
>>>>say, 6 months, they would have to purchase a new one for that
>>>>particular screening. You probably know all these rules but it is
>>>>always safer to repeat them in writing to avoid any future confusion or
>>>>misunderstandings.....
>>>>
>>>>The mailing address to send the paperwork is:
>>>>Cinema Tropical
>>>>c/o Monika Wagenberg
>>>>92 Orchard Street, #18
>>>>New York, NY 10002
>>>>
>>>>Please e-mail me back to this address.
>>>>
>>>>Best regards,
>>>>
>>>>Rebeca Conget
>>>>Director of Distribution
>>>>Cinema Tropical
>>>>347-244-5709
>>>>rebeca@cinematropical.com
>>>>

At 01:45 PM 2/2/2005, Meghann R Matwichuk wrote:
>On Wed, 2 Feb 2005, Jessica Rosner wrote:
>
>>In a case like this you probably had no other options as I am guessing the
>>film in question was not available anywhere else
>>What I find odd is who was supposed to be buying it for $295? That is hardly
>>a price for individuals. Was it one of those two tiered prices for public
>>libraries vs university libraries?
>
>Yep, no other options... the film is called Bolivia (d. Adrian Caetano,
>2001) and is listed on Facets as Not Yet Available. So, hopefully
>eventually we will be able to get our hands on it. I had to contact the
>company directly in order to find out a price, so I have no information
>about tiered pricing.
>
>>However this is a different type of situation since the title was not
>>available retail and as the company pretty much has 100% control they can
>>do what they want
>
>Yes, they certainly have complete control over it... What I found ironic
>was that, at the time, the company had a statement on their website
>stating something to the effect that "our mission is to reach the widest
>audience possible", etc. etc. Yet by charging nearly $700 for a feature
>film, they prevented the critical study and evaluation of what one
>instructor deemed an important work that they are responsible for
>distributing. We have purchased tapes that were much more expensive than
>their $295 price tag; it was the charge for rights that we would not use
>or need that made us balk and finally decide to postpone the purchase.
>
>Best,
>
>******************************
>Meghann R. Matwichuk
>Instructional Media Department
>Morris Library
>University of Delaware
>181 S. College Ave.
>Newark, DE 19717
>(302) 831-1475
>
>
>>>From: Meghann R Matwichuk <mtwchk@UDel.Edu>
>>>Reply-To: videolib@library.berkeley.edu
>>>Date: Wed, 2 Feb 2005 11:34:41 -0500 (EST)
>>>To: videolib@library.berkeley.edu
>>>Subject: Re: [Videolib] Fair use of videos
>>>
>>>Hi Mary (et. al.),
>>>
>>>This situation has come up in our department before -- we had a request to
>>>purchase a feature film distributed by a company called Cinema Tropical,
>>>and the purchase price was $295. We were prepared to pay this, but were
>>>informed that PPR rights would cost us an additional $400, and that we
>>>would need to purchase these rights for classroom use. The following is a
>>>clip from my response to Cinema Tropical:
>>>
>>>"A bit of clarification on the Public Performance Rights -- classroom
>>>showings are considered Fair Use under the face-to-face teaching provision
>>>of the Copyright Act. Non-classroom exhibition (i.e. inviting the public
>>>or opening the screening to those not in said class) would require PPR.
>>>Our faculty is intending to use this for a class, in a face-to-face
>>>teaching situation, and thus we won't be purchasing PPR for the title at
>>>this time."
>>>
>>>Not that this did any good, but it might be worth a shot with The
>>>Discovery Channel folks. In our case, the company refused to release the
>>>video to us for the purchase price of $295, and we refused to pay $400 for
>>>rights that we did not need or would not use. Thankfully, our instuctor
>>>was very understanding.
>>>
>>>Also, here's the text applicable text of the Act itself -- Section 110(1)
>>>of the Copyright Act:
>>>
>>>"Sec. 110. - Limitations on exclusive rights: Exemption of certain
>>>performances and displays
>>>
>>>Notwithstanding the provisions of section 106, the following are not
>>>infringements of copyright:
>>>
>>>(1) performance or display of a work by instructors or pupils in the
>>>course of face-to-face teaching activities of a nonprofit educational
>>>institution, in a classroom or similar place devoted to instruction..."
>>>
>>>Good luck,
>>>
>>>******************************
>>>Meghann R. Matwichuk
>>>Instructional Media Department
>>>Morris Library
>>>University of Delaware
>>>181 S. College Ave.
>>>Newark, DE 19717
>>>(302) 831-1475
>>>
>>>On Wed, 2 Feb 2005, Mary Seligman wrote:
>>>
>>>>Good morning:
>>>>A teacher in my building has requested we purchase the video "Pompeii"
>>>>shown
>>>>on The Discovery Channel. I called them and was told that it does not come
>>>>with public performance rights and therefore cannot be sold to a
>>>>school. It
>>>>is my understanding that Fair Use covers the showing of videos in
>>>>classrooms
>>>>as part of instruction, which is how this would be used. I understand
>>>>that I
>>>>would need PPR if I were to show it in the auditorium for entertainment.
>>>>Help?
>>>>Mary Seligman
>>>>Library Media Specialist
>>>>Paul D. Schreiber High School
>>>>Port Washington, NY
>>>
>>>
>>>~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~
>>>Marilyn B. Huntley, Audiovisual Assistant:
>>> Film scheduling, rentals/licensing & previews
>>>A-V Classroom Services, 408 C. A. Johnson Hall
>>>Hamilton College, 198 College Hill Rd., Clinton, NY 13323
>>>Phone 315-859-4120; Fax 315-859-4687
>>>e-mail mhuntley@hamilton.edu

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Aha! You're talking about "Bolivia" from Cinema Tropical. We've had some experience with that film. During the summer of 2003, a professor wanted our library to buy a copy of the videotape to keep in our collection. In addition, she wanted to hold a public showing in September.

Cinema Tropical was the only source for the video, so our library purchased it from them for $295. Then, in order to use it for a public showing, we also had to purchase a public performance license for $300, which was good for ONLY THAT ONE DATE. I'm pasting immediately below portions of the correspondence I received at that time from Cinema Tropical.
Marilyn Huntley

Date: Mon, 09 Jun 2003 00:51:48 -0400
From: rebeca@cinematropical.com
Subject: RE: Public showing of "Bolivia" video?
X-Originating-IP: 207.93.59.118
To: mhuntley@hamilton.edu

Dear Marilyn,

Thank you for your e-mails.... You actually CAN buy an institutional video cassette of BOLIVIA, we just haven't released it on home video yet, but libraries and schools can purchase a copy for $295.00. As you know, this copy can be kept in the library for individula study use and can also be used in a closed classroom environment for no further charge.

However, to have an open screening of it--open to more than just the students registered in a particular class--you will have to purchase an additional public performance license. This license, which is $300, is NOT a blanket license, meaning that it is only valid for a one time only screening, and if someone else wanted to show the film again in, say, 6 months, they would have to purchase a new one for that particular screening. You probably know all these rules but it is always safer to repeat them in writing to avoid any future confusion or misunderstandings.....

The mailing address to send the paperwork is:
Cinema Tropical
c/o Monika Wagenberg
92 Orchard Street, #18
New York, NY 10002

Please e-mail me back to this address.

Best regards,

Rebeca Conget
Director of Distribution
Cinema Tropical
347-244-5709
rebeca@cinematropical.com



At 01:45 PM 2/2/2005, Meghann R Matwichuk wrote:
On Wed, 2 Feb 2005, Jessica Rosner wrote:

In a case like this you probably had no other options as I am  guessing the
film in question was not available anywhere else
What I find odd is who was supposed to be buying it for $295? That is hardly
a price for individuals. Was it one of those two tiered prices for public
libraries vs university libraries?

Yep, no other options...  the film is called Bolivia (d. Adrian Caetano, 2001) and is listed on Facets as Not Yet Available.  So, hopefully eventually we will be able to get our hands on it.  I had to contact the company directly in order to find out a price, so I have no information about tiered pricing.

However this is   a different type of situation since the title was not
available retail and as the company pretty  much has  100% control they can
do what they want

Yes, they certainly have complete control over it...  What I found ironic was that, at the time, the company had a statement on their website stating something to the effect that "our mission is to reach the widest audience possible", etc. etc.  Yet by charging nearly $700 for a feature film, they prevented the critical study and evaluation of what one instructor deemed an important work that they are responsible for distributing.  We have purchased tapes that were much more expensive than their $295 price tag; it was the charge for rights that we would not use or need that made us balk and finally decide to postpone the purchase.

Best,

******************************
Meghann R. Matwichuk
Instructional Media Department
Morris Library
University of Delaware
181 S. College Ave.
Newark, DE  19717
(302) 831-1475


From: Meghann R Matwichuk <mtwchk@UDel.Edu>
Reply-To: videolib@library.berkeley.edu
Date: Wed, 2 Feb 2005 11:34:41 -0500 (EST)
To: videolib@library.berkeley.edu
Subject: Re: [Videolib] Fair use of videos

Hi Mary (et. al.),

This situation has come up in our department before -- we had a request to
purchase a feature film distributed by a company called Cinema Tropical,
and the purchase price was $295.  We were prepared to pay this, but were
informed that PPR rights would cost us an additional $400, and that we
would need to purchase these rights for classroom use.  The following is a
clip from my response to Cinema Tropical:

"A bit of clarification on the Public Performance Rights -- classroom
showings are considered Fair Use under the face-to-face teaching provision
of the Copyright Act.  Non-classroom exhibition (i.e. inviting the public
or opening the screening to those not in said class) would require PPR.
Our faculty is intending to use this for a class, in a face-to-face
teaching situation, and thus we won't be purchasing PPR for the title at
this time."

Not that this did any good, but it might be worth a shot with The
Discovery Channel folks.  In our case, the company refused to release the
video to us for the purchase price of $295, and we refused to pay $400 for
rights that we did not need or would not use.  Thankfully, our instuctor
was very understanding.

Also, here's the text applicable text of the Act itself -- Section 110(1)
of the Copyright Act:

"Sec. 110. - Limitations on exclusive rights: Exemption of certain
performances and displays

Notwithstanding the provisions of section 106, the following are not
infringements of copyright:

(1) performance or display of a work by instructors or pupils in the
course of face-to-face teaching activities of a nonprofit educational
institution, in a classroom or similar place devoted to instruction..."

Good luck,

******************************
Meghann R. Matwichuk
Instructional Media Department
Morris Library
University of Delaware
181 S. College Ave.
Newark, DE  19717
(302) 831-1475

On Wed, 2 Feb 2005, Mary Seligman wrote:

Good morning:
A teacher in my building has requested we purchase the video "Pompeii" shown
on The Discovery Channel.  I called them and was told that it does not come
with public performance rights and therefore cannot be sold to a school.  It
is my understanding that Fair Use covers the showing of videos in classrooms
as part of instruction, which is how this would be used.  I understand that I
would need PPR if I were to show it in the auditorium for entertainment.
Help?
Mary Seligman
Library Media Specialist
Paul D. Schreiber High School
Port Washington, NY


~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~
Marilyn B. Huntley, Audiovisual Assistant:
    Film scheduling, rentals/licensing & previews
A-V Classroom Services, 408 C. A. Johnson Hall
Hamilton College, 198 College Hill Rd., Clinton, NY 13323
Phone 315-859-4120; Fax 315-859-4687
e-mail mhuntley@hamilton.edu

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