Tuesday, May 17, 2005

'Anywhere From $2.5 Billion to $600 Billion'

An article in the July/August 2001 issue of the newsletter of the American Society of Journalists and Authors -- discussing the Supreme Court's landmark decision in the Tasini v. New York Times copyright suit -- states:

"An NWU [National Writers Union] study estimates that media firms owe anywhere from $2.5 billion to $600 billion to freelancers as a result of this ruling."

The NWU, ASJA, and the Authors Guild have secured preliminary approval of a $10-to-$18-million settlement in a consolidated class action implementing the Tasini ruling. You don't have to buy into the $2.5-to-$600-billion number in order to know that this settlement has no business getting approved until the parties at least document, discuss, and provide a rationale for reconciling the difference. After all, one percent of the lower boundary, $2.5 billion, would be $25 million. One hundredth of one percent of the upper boundary, $600 billion, would be $60 million.

Feel free to post blog comments or email me directly at info@muchnick.net. Our website is http://freelancerights.muchnick.net.


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