Providing Adequate Protection for Comedians’ Intellectual Creations: Examining Intellectual Property Norms and “Negative Spaces”
Gates, Trevor M.
Scholars and policymakers largely embrace the notion that society as a whole benefits when creators can prevent the unauthorized copying of their innovations. This is primarily achieved by granting intellectual property (IP) rights to creators, which generally gives them an exclusive right to prevent others from using their creations without permission. In exchange for this right, those innovations are shared with others, and ideally, society and the creators benefit from this exchange. However, there is increasing debate over whether intellectual property rights adequately protect innovations and incentivize others to create new works, and if not, what can be done to further those objectives.5 In examining that question, this Comment focuses on one industry in particular that has, in recent years, received increasing attention from legal scholars and the general public—the comedy industry.