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Dontreadonme
According to this Washington Post Article, FOX News is suing Al Franken for using the words 'Fair and Balanced' on the cover of his book.
Since Franken satires FOX throughout his book, the network is claiming that he is making money by using the catch phrase of the news channel.

Should words or phrases that are not associated with a tangible material good be 'owned'?
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Billy Jean
Fox is just another one of the victims of Al Franken's assault on the Right and they can't stand that he lays the truth on the table for everyone to read. Fox can't take a little rib poking. tongue.gif
GoAmerica
QUOTE(Dontreadonme @ Aug 12 2003, 08:15 AM)
According to this Washington Post Article, FOX News is suing Al Franken for using the words 'Fair and Balanced' on the cover of his book.
Since Franken satires FOX throughout his book, the network is claiming that he is making money by using the catch phrase of the news channel.

Should words or phrases that are not associated with a tangible material good be 'owned'?

I think this is ridculous. It's not like Al is using this to name a show or calling his book "Fair and balanced".

Maybe they are mad because they are mentioned in his book tongue.gif
Bill55AZ
Al gets free publicity out of this, so good for him.
I read his book about Rush Limbaugh, and it was funny.

Fox is making a mistake. All Al has to do is show that THEY borrowed the term from some other place, and even if they didn't, it will certainly look like they did.
Mike
I don't know how it is now, but O'Reilly used to end his show with, "The spin stops here..."

Then, Hannity/Colmes chimed in as they switched cameras, "...and America's Debate starts here."

Should we sue? smile.gif

I do have to say that it shows real bias when a 5 paragraph AP article paraphrasing what is most likely a small book of a lawsuit is enough to convice anyone that Al Franken is right and Fox is wrong.

At a certain point, we must all separate our personal political views from the law. unsure.gif


Mike
CruisingRam
Actually, I think precedent has already been set with "the wind done gone" lawsuit, as long as he can demonstrate parody and humour, which is no problem for Al Franken, Fox just bought him publicity he would have spent a fortune to get otherwise. Al Franken for president!
Amlord
QUOTE(Mike @ Aug 12 2003, 11:21 AM)
I don't know how it is now, but O'Reilly used to end his show with, "The spin stops here..."

Then, Hannity/Colmes chimed in as they switched cameras, "...and America's Debate starts here."

Should we sue? smile.gif

I do have to say that it shows real bias when a 5 paragraph AP article paraphrasing what is most likely a small book of a lawsuit is enough to convice anyone that Al Franken is right and Fox is wrong.

At a certain point, we must all separate our personal political views from the law.  unsure.gif


Mike

Actually, Mike, Hannity & Colmes has been on the air much longer than this site has been around...
Nu Marx
QUOTE(Dontreadonme @ Aug 12 2003, 08:15 AM)
Should words or phrases that are not associated with a tangible material good be 'owned'?

Words and/or phrases should not be owned. FOX is doing Al Franken a giant favor by giving him free publicity. Franken should win this suit easily, if the judge doesn't throw it out on day one. Owning a word or phrase is a ridiculous notion and News Corp. should know better.
BecomingHuman
Fair and Balanced

Now I'm in trouble!!!

This is absolutely ridiculous. It's like trying to copyright the letter A. Hey, if Fox wins this case, maybe Websters can sue the world.
Ataal
While I agree that words should not be owned by anyone, this lawsuit is certaintly not ridiculous in terms of our current laws.
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Nu Marx
QUOTE(Ataal @ Aug 13 2003, 12:48 PM)
this lawsuit is certaintly not ridiculous in terms of our current laws.

What laws would those be?
Jaime
Well this didn't take too long: Fox Loses Bid to Stop Franken Book, Washington Post, 08/22/03

The judge stated:
QUOTE
There are hard cases and there are easy cases. This is an easy case.  This case is wholly without merit both factually and legally.


I never did find a copy of Fox's complaint against Franken online anywhere. I checked the NY State Supreme Court website twice, the Smoking Gun a few times, and the usual google searches. I still would like to read it if anyone knows where a copy of it exists online. smile.gif
Grendel72
QUOTE(Jaime @ Aug 24 2003, 12:14 PM)
I still would like to read it if anyone knows where a copy of it exists online.  smile.gif

I believe this is it.
Personally, I find it hilarious that Fox tried to claim Lateline was a news program. Are they lying or just too stupid to know a joke? Note also point 77. which seems outlandish and meanspirited to me.
Jareds411
I would like to add the fact the Franken also had a picture of Fox news anchor Bill O'Reilly on the cover. I think it would be reasonable for Fox to think that people may get the assumptsion the book was endorsed by Fox.
CruisingRam
They just dropped the suit- with a barb saying they are "returning him to obscurity where he belongs"- well, they did make him a star again LOL
Nu Marx
QUOTE(Jareds411 @ Aug 27 2003, 06:43 PM)
I would like to add the fact the Franken also had a picture of Fox news anchor Bill O'Reilly on the cover.  I think it would be reasonable for Fox to think that people may get the assumptsion the book was endorsed by Fox.

Very, very unlikely. Sean Hannity had a backdrop of the U.S. flag on the cover of his book, but no one made the mistake of assuming that it was endorsed by the U.S. government. O'Reilly is a public figure and therefore his likeness is in the public arena. The same could be said about the likeness of Al Franken.
Ataal
I'm not sure how the american flag and Bill even remotely relate. Billy O'Reilly is basically only known as a radio/TV personality for FoxNews.

TV/Radio personalities themselves at times cannot participate in certain events because the company they work for will be associated with the event, thus they can void their contract and in some cases be let go.

Furthermore, legally you don't have to have permission to use the american flag, while you do have to have permission to use someone's name, picture, and anything that is used synonomously with that person.
Nu Marx
QUOTE(Ataal @ Aug 29 2003, 01:17 PM)
while you do have to have permission to use someone's name, picture, and anything that is used synonomously with that person.

Incorrect. Bill O'Reilly has thrust himself into the public arena. He has put himself up for display to be seen/heard by the public. His likeness may be used by any person without his permission for anything they want as long as his likeness is presented truthfully. His picture on the cover of Franken's book is a still from his show on Fox News. As long as his likeness is presented truthfully, such as in this case, and is not being used to falsely endorse some product, then it is perfectly legal.
Wertz
A couple of points before this thread is consigned to Old News. First, Bill O'Reilly was one of four "lying liars" who appeared in a bank of monitors in the background. Anyone who thought there was some relationship between his network and the book would have to be thicker than a Fox News viewer.

Also, the injunction wasn't "dropped" as has been suggested here (the only thing dropped lately has been Barney the dog), it was thrown out by U.S. District Judge Denny Chin, whose dismissal, I thought, would make a much better tag line for Fox News: "Wholly Without Merit".
NiteGuy
Couldn't have happened to a nicer company tongue.gif

Seriously, I believe that the Fox legal department really had to know that this suit was without merit, but was pushed so hard by a certain member of their staff (O'Reilly), that they did it to get him off their backs.

And I think O'Reilly knew it would not be upheld, but that, since he seems to have a personal vendetta with Franken, that it would at least hurt Franken some by having to pay a lawyer to deal with it.

At least the court had the good sense to see it for what it was.
Grendel72
QUOTE(NiteGuy @ Sep 12 2003, 06:03 AM)
And I think O'Reilly knew it would not be upheld, but that, since he seems to have a personal vendetta with Franken, that it would at least hurt Franken some by having to pay a lawyer to deal with it.

But, I dunno if I buy that theory. I'm no fan of Fox News, but they would have to be even stupider than I think they are to not realise that the suit would be giving Franken's book free publicity.
NiteGuy
QUOTE(Grendel72 @ Sep 12 2003, 01:57 PM)
QUOTE(NiteGuy @ Sep 12 2003, 06:03 AM)
And I think O'Reilly knew it would not be upheld, but that, since he seems to have a personal vendetta with Franken, that it would at least hurt Franken some by having to pay a lawyer to deal with it.

But, I dunno if I buy that theory. I'm no fan of Fox News, but they would have to be even stupider than I think they are to not realise that the suit would be giving Franken's book free publicity.

Yeah, you'd think they would know better than that. But, then again, regardless of the reason, they went ahead and filed a lawsuit that they had to know had little to no chance of winning.
countrockula
Actually, the New Yorker did a piece on this a couple of issues ago. Apparently, according to their sources, the lawsuit was brought forth at O'Reilly's behest, and the suit was generally regarded as an embarassment by everyone at Fox.
ndj
Why not sure him for using the word "right," on the cover of his book, I bet Fox has used that one.
Jaime
CLOSED.

Seems as if this one has run out of steam.
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