In my next “Sightings” column, to be published in Saturday’s Wall Street Journal, I look at two seemingly unrelated court cases that turn out to have a great deal in common. One is the fast-brewing imbroglio triggered when the director, choreographer, and designers of the Broadway production of Urinetown publicly accused two regional theater companies of stealing their ideas. The other is the decision of a London judge to award forty percent of the copyright of “A Whiter Shade of Pale” to the organist who played on the original Procol Harum recording–even though he didn’t write the song.
Are these cases watershed moments in the ongoing redefinition of intellectual property rights? For the answer, pick up a copy of tomorrow’s Journal, where you’ll find my column in the “Pursuits” section.