Editing 1581: Birthday

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This strip refers to a ruling, from the day before the release of this comic, by a federal judge in California ({{w|George H. King|George King}}), stating that the song is not covered by a valid copyright (see [http://www.latimes.com/local/lanow/la-me-ln-happy-birthday-song-lawsuit-decision-20150922-story.html Warner's 'Happy Birthday' Copyright Not Valid, Judge Rules]). This ruling resulted from a lawsuit filed by Good Morning To You Productions (singer {{w|Rupa Marya}} and filmmaker {{w|Robert D. Siegel|Robert Siegel}}) against Warner/Chappel Music to declare Warner/Chappel's copyright claim in the song invalid (filing at [http://www.scribd.com/doc/147645129/Happybirthday]). With this ruling, the court declared that Warner/Chappell does not have a copyright claim to the song, and therefore the song can now be sung or published by anyone, in any context, without having to pay royalties to Warner/Chappell.
 
This strip refers to a ruling, from the day before the release of this comic, by a federal judge in California ({{w|George H. King|George King}}), stating that the song is not covered by a valid copyright (see [http://www.latimes.com/local/lanow/la-me-ln-happy-birthday-song-lawsuit-decision-20150922-story.html Warner's 'Happy Birthday' Copyright Not Valid, Judge Rules]). This ruling resulted from a lawsuit filed by Good Morning To You Productions (singer {{w|Rupa Marya}} and filmmaker {{w|Robert D. Siegel|Robert Siegel}}) against Warner/Chappel Music to declare Warner/Chappel's copyright claim in the song invalid (filing at [http://www.scribd.com/doc/147645129/Happybirthday]). With this ruling, the court declared that Warner/Chappell does not have a copyright claim to the song, and therefore the song can now be sung or published by anyone, in any context, without having to pay royalties to Warner/Chappell.
  
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The ruling does not go so far as to declare the song to be in the public domain, leaving it more correctly defined as an {{w|Orphan works|orphan work}}. Randall seems to be celebrating the fact that this strip, which would have put him at risk for a lawsuit the day before, is now unlikely to be challenged since the odds of a new party appearing and successfully claiming copyright on the lyrics and subsequently demanding license fees is approximately zero.
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The ruling does not go so far as to declare the song to be in the public domain, leaving it more correctly defined as an {{w|Orphan works|orphan work}}. Randall seems to be celebrating the fact that this strip, which would have put him at risk for a lawsuit the day before, is now unlikely to be challenged since the odds of a new party appearing and successfully claiming copyright on the lyrics and subsequently demanding license fees is approximately zero.
  
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The title text is a joke that refers to Randall calling the police against {{w|Chuck E. Cheese's}} as well as his own friends and parents when they sang "Happy Birthday" and did not pay royalties. The song is very commonly used in entertainment restaurants, such as Chuck E. Cheese's, and at both grown-ups' and children's birthdays. Because restaurants are commercial enterprises, public performances of the song, prior to this ruling, would potentially have exposed the restaurant to liability claims (though singing it at a private birthday party would not). In either case, calling the police would be an extreme overreaction.
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The title text is a joke that refers to Randall calling the police against {{w|Chuck E. Cheese's}} as well as his own friends and parents when they sang "Happy Birthday" and did not pay royalties. The song is very commonly used in entertainment restaurants, such as Chuck E. Cheese's, and at both grown up's and children's birthdays. Because restaurants are commercial enterprises, public performances of the song, prior to this ruling, would potentially expose the restaurant to liability claims (though singing it at a private birthday party would not). In either case, calling the police would be an extreme overreaction.
  
 
However, many restaurants (for example, [http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=OG9yZigKk0I Olive Garden]) actually have staff sing a special birthday song (not ''Happy Birthday To You'') to avoid having to pay royalties.
 
However, many restaurants (for example, [http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=OG9yZigKk0I Olive Garden]) actually have staff sing a special birthday song (not ''Happy Birthday To You'') to avoid having to pay royalties.

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