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Identity Protection: Copyright, Right of Publicity, and the Artist's Negative Voide

Klein, Jeff (2014) Identity Protection: Copyright, Right of Publicity, and the Artist's Negative Voide. Master's Thesis, Bowling Green State University.

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What do you value most about your voice? As ethnomusicological studies of the voice expand, so must our understanding of what voice even means. Voice must entail more than just a sonic phenomenon, but must also relate to ideology, to our very identity, even. This thesis will fuse ethnomusicological and legal perspectives to explore how American and, to a lesser extent, international copyright law and other legal mechanisms protect more than just a musician’s economic interest, but also his very identity. I will explore the right of publicity and the concept of moral rights and how they relate to voice and identity. The right of publicity is a musician’s right to protect his identity as well as his copyrighted works while moral rights is the right of a musician to prevent certain uses of his work even when he has assigned the copyright of that work to another. This thesis will suggest a theoretical framework for investigating the voice as an intangible legal marker of identity. This thesis will examine where copyright law protects identity and where it falls short and how the right of publicity fills in the gaps to provide comprehensive protection for a musician’s voice in the broadest sense. It will provide a background on the scope of copyright law, as well as how it has historically developed to protect more than just work-product, but also the musician’s very identity. It will then explore the right of publicity and moral rights and how those ideas fit into the general legal scheme of copyright protection. I will accomplish this through interviews with musicians, as well as explorations of current scholarly work on identity, copyright, voice, the right of publicity, and moral rights. I will also explore important legal cases and relevant statutes in these areas, such as Tom Waits v. Frito-Lay, Bette Midler v. Ford Motor Company and the Copyright Act of 1976. These explorations can help us understand how musicians can protect their identity by protecting their ideological, as well as their physical, voices.


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Item Type: Other Thesis, Dissertation, or Long Paper (Master's Thesis)
Status: Unpublished
CreatorsEmailPitt UsernameORCID
Klein, Jeff
Date: May 2014
Date Type: Publication
Access Restriction: No restriction; Release the ETD for access worldwide immediately.
Publisher: Bowling Green State University
Institution: Bowling Green State University
Thesis Type: Master's Thesis
Refereed: Yes
Uncontrolled Keywords: copyright, right, of, publicity, identity, voice, negative, voice, positive, voice, ideological, voice, individual, identity, collective, identity, self, moral, rights, ethics
Official URL:
Date Deposited: 27 Oct 2015 15:20
Last Modified: 20 Dec 2018 00:56


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