Billboard reports (December 20, 2004) that the same Court that ruled a 2 second sample of a Funkadelic guitar solo constitutes copright infringement of the original sound recording has agreed to reconsider the matter (see my September 9, 2004 blog). The defendants argued that the sampling was too small to constitute copyright infringement but the Sixth Circuit Court of Appeals in Nashville disagreed. The defendant, No Limit Films, filed a petition for a rehearing and the RIAA filed a petition in support of the defendant. The Court stated that the "issues raised in the petition and supporting amicus brief are worthy of additional consideration."
Tuesday a federal court of appeals in Nashville ruled that sampling of two seconds from a sound recording constituted copyright infringement. The infringement was of the sound recording copyright--not the underlying musical composition.
According to an article in Billboard.biz yesterday (September 8, 2004) "a mere two-second unauthorized sample of a guitar solo from Funkadelic's 'Get Off Your Ass and Jam' is enough to constitute copyright infringement of the recording." Prior to this ruling it was widely accepted that in order for a use of a copyrighted work to be considered an infringement, the taking had to be "substantial". However, according to the Sixth Circuit Court of Appeals, in the case of Sound Recording copyrights, any taking, no matter how brief, is sufficient to constitute an infringement assuming all other elements of the case have been proven.