Letter (web-only so far)

State of © Play

Did anyone else notice that the dénouement of the BBC Fleet Street drama State of Play revolved around a freelance's ownership of copyright? As things were unravelling, the top brass of the paper involved (The Herald) handed down the edict that the story was theirs and they would kill it if they felt like it. Cal, the journalist digging up the dirt, retorted that he was on a freelance contract, copyright in the story was therefore his, and if they weren't going to print it he would take it to the Telegraph.

I think that last bit of the threat isn't too frightening. But how often do you see a major TV series seriously considering the status of copyright stories belonging to freelances?

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