Media Law Prof Blog

Editor: Christine A. Corcos
Louisiana State Univ.

Monday, July 20, 2009

The Cornversation Continues

Dotan Oliar and Christopher Jon Sprigman, University of Virginia School of Law, have published "From Corn to Norms: How IP Entitlements Affect What Stand-Up Comedians Create," in volume 95 of Virginia Law Review In Brief (no. 57)(2009). Here is the abstract.

In There’s No Free Laugh (Anymore): The Emergence of Intellectual Property Norms and the Transformation of Stand-Up Comedy, 94 Virginia L. Rev. 1787 (2008), we explored how, why, and what stand-up comedians have created at different points in the history of stand-up comedy. From this study, we offered insights into how intellectual property (“IP”) law affects human motivation to create, how legal and non-legal motivations interact, and how the emergence of IP entitlements (in comedians’ case, norm-based entitlements) may change creative practices. We offered a static analysis of how stand-up comedians use social norms as a substitute for formal IP law in order to protect their jokes and comedic routines, and a dynamic analysis of how these norms came into being over the last half century.

In this short piece for the Virginia Law Review's In Brief, we reply to a group of thoughtful responses to our article by Professors Michael Madison, Jennifer Rothman, Henry Smith, and Katherine Strandburg.

Download the essay here.


See also There's No Free Laugh Anymore (Olier and Sprigman); Custom, Comedy, and the Value of Dissent (Rothman); and Of Coase and Comedy, Or the Comedy of Copyright (Madison).

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