Re: [Videolib] 1987 film "Chinese Ghost Story

Ciara Healy (cmhealy@waketech.edu)
Wed, 31 May 2006 15:12:54 -0400

Can it be considered an opportunity to allow the "industry" or perhaps
the library media industry to set forth what diligence is? Certainly
diligence means something and can mean almost anything but it seems
better to offer a somewhat acceptable definition of diligence rather
than let lawmakers or policy folks draft one and impose it. That way,
people who are putting in the actual diligence due to rights holders can
have some say in the matter. Is there already an industry standard for
searching? Can't the standard be stipulated (it will be at some point
and perhaps not by people who know what they are talking about) by
pointing out how it is already done and tweaking it?

I would absolutely love to see a sensible definition of diligence that
most of the time fairly compensated film makers and most of the time
made it possible for people to see films. Must the diligence applied to
limit cases block the creation of a more ordinary and mutually
acceptable standard of diligence? It may be impossible to do enough to
find the parents of an orphan if the seeming orphan is from far away,
has an extended family and was born in obscurity, but that doesn't mean
that in many cases some orphans and their families can be reunited
without heroic measures.

Ciara

>>> jrosner@kino.com 5/31/2006 1:57 pm >>>
Well ownership of feature films is rarely that difficult to determine
but it
it can be expensive and time consuming. Trust me that the "Orphan"
bill was
basically aimed at NON feature material.
Also it is VERY easy to have multiple owners for a single film which
means
you would HAVE to clear it with two or more parties. Again determining
ownership on feature films can be done probably 98% or more of the time
BUT
It will require far more money and time than an average user such as a
library could afford.
The way things are going with most distributors having little interest
in
What we call "public performance rights" for feature films it will
become
harder and harder to obtain them on most non studio titles. At BEST
someone
who wants to show say a Chaplin, Truffaut, or Ealing film might be able
to
find the overseas owner but be quoted a very large fee, at worst you
will
spend an extra $200 to $1,000 to LOCATE the rights holder of a title
only to
be A. Quoted a huge fee or B. Told they are not interested.

I realize this is a sad picture but this is the situation

On 5/31/06 1:31 PM, "Brewer, Michael" <brewerm@u.library.arizona.edu>
wrote:

> Jessica,
>
> I just wanted to bring this topic up, as it will be something that
the
> media field will need to know about in the coming years. The issues
you
> bring up are serious ones and I am not sure the law will address
them
> completely. I am just interested in how things will be sorted out
in
> those fuzzy areas. Your point especially about finding rights
owners
> for foreign titles. What will constitute "diligent" in this
context?
> As you mention, it may be impossible to once and for all determine a
> film is an orphan, but my sense is that if a rights holder cannot be
> located (after the "diligent" search), the work will be considered
an
> orphan unless a rights holder surfaces. One will not have to prove
that
> there is no rights holder, just show that one has searched
> (appropriately, whatever that is) and come up empty.
>
> I anticipate a lot of confusion over this for these types of works.
For
> example, if one is unable to ascertain who the REAL owner is among
> several who claim ownership, could this constitute the work being an
> "orphan" work? I don't have the answer here, but it seems that it
would
> relegate it to the same state of limbo "true" orphans are currently
in.
> I guess we'll have to wait and see how it all shakes out.
>
> mb
>
> Michael Brewer
> Slavic Studies, German Studies & Media Arts Librarian
> University of Arizona Library A210
> 1510 E. University
> P.O. Box 210055
> Tucson, AZ 85721
> Voice: 520.307.2771
> Fax: 520.621.9733
> brewerm@u.library.arizona.edu
>
> -----Original Message-----
> From: owner-videolib@lists.berkeley.edu
> [mailto:owner-videolib@lists.berkeley.edu] On Behalf Of Jessica
Rosner
> Sent: Tuesday, May 30, 2006 3:39 PM
> To: videolib@lists.berkeley.edu
> Subject: Re: [Videolib] 1987 film "Chinese Ghost Story
>
> I guess what I meant was that as a practical matter it is virtually
> impossible to determine that any foreign film is an "orphan" in that
the
> research necessary for proving this would be infinitely more
burdensome
> than an American work and again I did correspond with the prime
mover
> behind
> this legislation on another matter but he confirmed that this will
have
> very
> little effect on FEATURE films save some independent ones.
>
> Also this is far from being passed as it is and I suspect some even
more
> rigid restrictions will be added before it does.
>
> There some irony in this discussion being started by CHINESE GHOST
STORY
> As Asian countries are notorious as hotbeds of piracy of both their
own
> and
> foreign films and in which copyright protection is virtually non
> existent
>
>
> On 5/30/06 5:54 PM, "Brewer, Michael"
<brewerm@u.library.arizona.edu>
> wrote:
>
>> Jessica,
>>
>> I agree that films will seldom be candidates for Orphan Works,
>> especially if people do "diligent" searches. I just hope that that
> term
>> is really defined to keep people from cutting corners.
>>
>> I heard back from an international copyright specialist on this and
> she
>> mentions that, in the US, US law on orphan works will apply to all
>> works, foreign and domestic.
>>
>> As for the research and scholarship limitation, that is for the
> portion
>> of section 108 that relates to works in their final 20 years of
>> copyright protection (which, it seems, will largely be eclipsed by
>> Orphan works).
>>
>> You bring up a good point about determining who, among many, holds
the
>> copyright. Orphan works won't help there. It seems those
situations
>> can only be worked out by the courts (if it ever gets that far),
and
>> that, unfortunately, means those films will more or less remain
>> unavailable to most scholars.
>>
>> mb
>>
>> Michael Brewer
>> Slavic Studies, German Studies & Media Arts Librarian
>> University of Arizona Library A210
>> 1510 E. University
>> P.O. Box 210055
>> Tucson, AZ 85721
>> Voice: 520.307.2771
>> Fax: 520.621.9733
>> brewerm@u.library.arizona.edu
>>
>> -----Original Message-----
>> From: owner-videolib@lists.berkeley.edu
>> [mailto:owner-videolib@lists.berkeley.edu] On Behalf Of Jessica
Rosner
>> Sent: Tuesday, May 30, 2006 1:54 PM
>> To: videolib@lists.berkeley.edu
>> Subject: Re: [Videolib] 1987 film "Chinese Ghost Story
>>
>> Well keep in mind that GATT supercedes US Copyright law and the
> concept
>> of
>> Public Domain is virtually unheard of in Europe for instance so
the
>> likelihood of a feature film being without a rights holder in
almost
> non
>> existent. The thing is you have lots an lots of messy legal issues
>> involving
>> say multiple parties claiming rights, bankruptcies etc which make
>> getting
>> PPR rights on many foreign films very, very difficult however it
does
>> NOT
>> mean that the rights holders don't exist.
>> My concern is someone thinking well Tai Seng is not being
responsive
> or
>> MK2 did not answer our fax and therefore we exorcised due diligence
in
>> trying to clear this. Again at its BEST the Orphan Film work might
> get
>> you
>> some limited access to American films almost entirely non feature
> works
>> that
>> have fallen through the cracks but it is absolutely not intended to
>> allow
>> Public showings of foreign works
>>
>> I recently e mailed with one of the prime movers behind this on a
>> related
>> subject and he confirmed that it has little relevance to the vast
>> majority
>> Of feature films
>>
>>
>> On 5/30/06 4:06 PM, "Brewer, Michael"
<brewerm@u.library.arizona.edu>
>> wrote:
>>
>>> Jessica,
>>>
>>> You bring up an interesting point, and one for which I don't have
an
>>> immediate answer. I had not thought about foreign works. There
is
> no
>>> mention of this not applying to foreign works in any of the
documents
>> I
>>> have read. My assumption, therefore, was that this would apply to
>> uses
>>> of works in the United States, regardless of country of origin,
but
>> I'll
>>> have to check on this. This is pretty much how, for example, Fair
>> Use,
>>> or the TEACH Act, or section 108, or most other sections of US
>> copyright
>>> law works (an exception would be duration of copyright). I think
>>> whether or not this would apply to foreign works would have more
to
> do
>>> with whether or not they have signed Berne or some other
> international
>>> copyright agreement to which we also are a signatory.
>>>
>>> I'll look into this more and see what I can find.
>>>
>>> As for only applying to research, that, too, is not in the
documents
> I
>>> have read. At the site for which I gave the previous URL, this is
> the
>>> stated purpose of the research into Orphan works in the first
place:
>>>
>>> During 2005, the Copyright Office studied issues raised by "orphan
>>> works"- copyrighted works whose owners may be impossible to
identify
>> and
>>> locate. Concerns had been raised that the uncertainty surrounding
>>> ownership of such works might needlessly discourage subsequent
>> creators
>>> and users from incorporating such works in new creative efforts,
or
>> from
>>> making such works available to the public.
>>>
>>> I agree that most rights holders could be found were the search
>> diligent
>>> enough. I will be curious, though, to see how people (and the
> courts)
>>> define diligent.
>>>
>>> mb
>>>
>>> Michael Brewer
>>> Slavic Studies, German Studies & Media Arts Librarian
>>> University of Arizona Library A210
>>> 1510 E. University
>>> P.O. Box 210055
>>> Tucson, AZ 85721
>>> Voice: 520.307.2771
>>> Fax: 520.621.9733
>>> brewerm@u.library.arizona.edu
>>>
>>> -----Original Message-----
>>> From: owner-videolib@lists.berkeley.edu
>>> [mailto:owner-videolib@lists.berkeley.edu] On Behalf Of Jessica
> Rosner
>>> Sent: Tuesday, May 30, 2006 10:42 AM
>>> To: videolib@lists.berkeley.edu
>>> Subject: Re: [Videolib] 1987 film "Chinese Ghost Story
>>>
>>> It would DEFINITELY not effect this film. The Orphan work can ONLY
>> apply
>>> to
>>> American films and there is no question that this film has an
owner
>> and
>>> a
>>> very good high priced lawyer or researcher could track it down for
> you
>>> just
>>> not worth the time and money
>>>
>>> The Orphan bill will have virtually no effect on feature films
where
>> you
>>> can
>>> With enough work find a rights holder 98% of the time. Also the
> Orphan
>>> work
>>> is strictly copying for research etc and does NOT allow ANY
public
>>> showing
>>> of a work. I think the main intent of the Orphan bill is to allow
>>> indendent
>>> films, short works, industrials etc better access for research
etc.
>>> Again
>>> virtually no effect on feature films and none for films produced
>> outside
>>> the
>>> US
>>>
>>>
>>> On 5/30/06 1:12 PM, "Brewer, Michael"
<brewerm@u.library.arizona.edu>
>>> wrote:
>>>
>>>> All,
>>>>
>>>> I wonder what affect the Orphan Works bill, which is expected to
be
>>>> passed in some form by Congress and go into effect in 2008, will
> have
>>> on
>>>> these sorts of situations. I think the key portion of it will be
>>>> determining what constitutes a "good faith, reasonably diligent
>>> search"
>>>> for the copyright holder. My understanding of what is being
> proposed
>>> is
>>>> that if this "reasonably diligent search" is done (however that
may
>> be
>>>> defined), and a copyright holder is not found, then one can use
the
>>> work
>>>> non-commercially without fear of any damages. If the use is
ongoing,
>>> and
>>>> a copyright holder surfaces, "reasonable compensation" must be
paid.
>>>>
>>>> There is more info on Orphan works here.
>>>> http://www.copyright.gov/orphan/
>>>>
>>>> mb
>>>>
>>>> Michael Brewer
>>>> Slavic Studies, German Studies & Media Arts Librarian
>>>> University of Arizona Library A210
>>>> 1510 E. University
>>>> P.O. Box 210055
>>>> Tucson, AZ 85721
>>>> Voice: 520.307.2771
>>>> Fax: 520.621.9733
>>>> brewerm@u.library.arizona.edu
>>>>
>>>> -----Original Message-----
>>>> From: owner-videolib@lists.berkeley.edu
>>>> [mailto:owner-videolib@lists.berkeley.edu] On Behalf Of Jessica
>> Rosner
>>>> Sent: Tuesday, May 30, 2006 9:02 AM
>>>> To: videolib@lists.berkeley.edu
>>>> Subject: Re: [Videolib] 1987 film "Chinese Ghost Story
>>>>
>>>> If Tai Seng can't help , I doubt there is much you can do
>>>> The Hong Kong titles are messy to say the least and you might
>>>> Find 3 companies claiming to own it. I don't think anyone in the
>>>> US could own it at this point and trying to untangle this in HK
is
>>> more
>>>> trouble than it is worth
>>>>
>>>> FYI this is NOT an unusual situation for a foreign title
>>>> There are thousands if not tens of thousands of titles where it
is
>>>> Difficult to impossible to get rights for a public showing which
> does
>>>> Not mean they are not protected , only that these rights are
>>> considered
>>>> So unimportant that they are rarely in the home video contracts
>>> meaning
>>>> You have to track the overseas rights holder to obtain them
>>>>
>>>>
>>>> On 5/30/06 10:38 AM, "Rick Provine" <PROVINE@depauw.edu> wrote:
>>>>
>>>>> Howdy:
>>>>>
>>>>> One more try...
>>>>>
>>>>> We want to show the film, "Sinnui yauwan," (Chinese Ghost Story,
>>> 1987)
>>>>> for an arts festival next fall, and are seeking rights
>>>>> holder/distributor info. The previous one (Tai Seng
Entertainment)
>>> no
>>>>> longer has the rights.
>>>>>
>>>>> Jessica? Facets? Help!!!
>>>>>
>>>>> Thanks.
>>>>>
>>>>> Rick
>>>>>
>>>>>
>>>>> _____________________________
>>>>> Rick Provine
>>>>> Director of Libraries
>>>>> and Associate CIO for Library
>>>>> & Information Services
>>>>> DePauw University
>>>>> 11 East Larabee Street
>>>>> Greencastle, IN 46135
>>>>> provine@depauw.edu
>>>>> office 765-658-4435
>>>>> mobile 765-301-0262
>>>>> fax 765-658-4445
>>>>>
>>>>>>>> PROVINE@depauw.edu 5/26/2006 1:29 PM >>>
>>>>> Greetings, Folks:
>>>>>
>>>>> Anyone know who currently has PPR for the 1987 film, "Chinese
Ghost
>>>>> Story?"
>>>>>
>>>>> Thanks!
>>>>>
>>>>> Rick
>>>>>
>>>>> VIDEOLIB is intended to encourage the broad and lively
discussion
> of
>>>>> issues relating to the selection, evaluation,
>>>> acquisition,bibliographic
>>>>> control, preservation, and use of current and evolving video
> formats
>>>> in
>>>>> libraries and related institutions. It is hoped that the list
will
>>>> serve
>>>>> as an effective working tool for video librarians, as well as a
>>>> channel
>>>>> of communication between libraries,educational institutions, and
>>> video
>>>>> producers and distributors.
>>>>> VIDEOLIB is intended to encourage the broad and lively
discussion
> of
>>>> issues
>>>>> relating to the selection, evaluation, acquisition,bibliographic
>>>> control,
>>>>> preservation, and use of current and evolving video formats in
>>>> libraries and
>>>>> related institutions. It is hoped that the list will serve as an
>>>> effective
>>>>> working tool for video librarians, as well as a channel of
>>>> communication
>>>>> between libraries,educational institutions, and video producers
and
>>>>> distributors.
>>>>
>>>>
>>>>
>>>> Proud Resident of a BLUE STATE
>>>>
>>>> Jessica Rosner
>>>> Kino International
>>>> 333 W 39th St. 503
>>>> NY NY 10018
>>>> jrosner@kino.com
>>>> 212-629-6880
>>>>
>>>>
>>>> VIDEOLIB is intended to encourage the broad and lively discussion
of
>>>> issues relating to the selection, evaluation,
>>> acquisition,bibliographic
>>>> control, preservation, and use of current and evolving video
formats
>>> in
>>>> libraries and related institutions. It is hoped that the list
will
>>> serve
>>>> as an effective working tool for video librarians, as well as a
>>> channel
>>>> of communication between libraries,educational institutions, and
>> video
>>>> producers and distributors.
>>>>
>>>> VIDEOLIB is intended to encourage the broad and lively discussion
of
>>> issues
>>>> relating to the selection, evaluation, acquisition,bibliographic
>>> control,
>>>> preservation, and use of current and evolving video formats in
>>> libraries and
>>>> related institutions. It is hoped that the list will serve as an
>>> effective
>>>> working tool for video librarians, as well as a channel of
>>> communication
>>>> between libraries,educational institutions, and video producers
and
>>>> distributors.
>>>
>>>
>>>
>>> Proud Resident of a BLUE STATE
>>>
>>> Jessica Rosner
>>> Kino International
>>> 333 W 39th St. 503
>>> NY NY 10018
>>> jrosner@kino.com
>>> 212-629-6880
>>>
>>>
>>> VIDEOLIB is intended to encourage the broad and lively discussion
of
>>> issues relating to the selection, evaluation,
>> acquisition,bibliographic
>>> control, preservation, and use of current and evolving video
formats
>> in
>>> libraries and related institutions. It is hoped that the list will
>> serve
>>> as an effective working tool for video librarians, as well as a
>> channel
>>> of communication between libraries,educational institutions, and
> video
>>> producers and distributors.
>>>
>>> VIDEOLIB is intended to encourage the broad and lively discussion
of
>> issues
>>> relating to the selection, evaluation, acquisition,bibliographic
>> control,
>>> preservation, and use of current and evolving video formats in
>> libraries and
>>> related institutions. It is hoped that the list will serve as an
>> effective
>>> working tool for video librarians, as well as a channel of
>> communication
>>> between libraries,educational institutions, and video producers
and
>>> distributors.
>>
>>
>>
>> Proud Resident of a BLUE STATE
>>
>> Jessica Rosner
>> Kino International
>> 333 W 39th St. 503
>> NY NY 10018
>> jrosner@kino.com
>> 212-629-6880
>>
>>
>> VIDEOLIB is intended to encourage the broad and lively discussion
of
>> issues relating to the selection, evaluation,
> acquisition,bibliographic
>> control, preservation, and use of current and evolving video
formats
> in
>> libraries and related institutions. It is hoped that the list will
> serve
>> as an effective working tool for video librarians, as well as a
> channel
>> of communication between libraries,educational institutions, and
video
>> producers and distributors.
>>
>> VIDEOLIB is intended to encourage the broad and lively discussion
of
> issues
>> relating to the selection, evaluation, acquisition,bibliographic
> control,
>> preservation, and use of current and evolving video formats in
> libraries and
>> related institutions. It is hoped that the list will serve as an
> effective
>> working tool for video librarians, as well as a channel of
> communication
>> between libraries,educational institutions, and video producers and
>> distributors.
>
>
>
> Proud Resident of a BLUE STATE
>
> Jessica Rosner
> Kino International
> 333 W 39th St. 503
> NY NY 10018
> jrosner@kino.com
> 212-629-6880
>
>
> VIDEOLIB is intended to encourage the broad and lively discussion of
> issues relating to the selection, evaluation,
acquisition,bibliographic
> control, preservation, and use of current and evolving video formats
in
> libraries and related institutions. It is hoped that the list will
serve
> as an effective working tool for video librarians, as well as a
channel
> of communication between libraries,educational institutions, and
video
> producers and distributors.
>
> VIDEOLIB is intended to encourage the broad and lively discussion of
issues
> relating to the selection, evaluation, acquisition,bibliographic
control,
> preservation, and use of current and evolving video formats in
libraries and
> related institutions. It is hoped that the list will serve as an
effective
> working tool for video librarians, as well as a channel of
communication
> between libraries,educational institutions, and video producers and
> distributors.

Proud Resident of a BLUE STATE

Jessica Rosner
Kino International
333 W 39th St. 503
NY NY 10018
jrosner@kino.com
212-629-6880

VIDEOLIB is intended to encourage the broad and lively discussion of
issues relating to the selection, evaluation, acquisition,bibliographic
control, preservation, and use of current and evolving video formats in
libraries and related institutions. It is hoped that the list will serve
as an effective working tool for video librarians, as well as a channel
of communication between libraries,educational institutions, and video
producers and distributors.
VIDEOLIB is intended to encourage the broad and lively discussion of issues relating to the selection, evaluation, acquisition,bibliographic control, preservation, and use of current and evolving video formats in libraries and related institutions. It is hoped that the list will serve as an effective working tool for video librarians, as well as a channel of communication between libraries,educational institutions, and video producers and distributors.