Second Circuit Reverses Copyright Fair Use Defense in “Hand of God” Case, but Affirms Dismissal on Standing Grounds

October 18, 2016NYSBA The Entertainment, Arts and Sports Law Blog

Read Barry Werbin’s latest blog, published by the Entertainment, Arts & Sports Law Section of the New York State Bar Association, discussing the Second Circuit’s reversal of the district court’s finding that the verbatim use of the famous Abbott & Costello "Who's on First?" comedy skit by the producers of the Broadway show "Hand of God" qualified as a non‐infringing fair use.  The report examines the ways in which the decision clarifies the limits of transformative use, cutting back on what had been viewed by many practitioners as an increasingly expanded application of that concept in fair use cases.