Happy Birthday Song Released to Public Domain

by
Anonymous Coward
in legal on (#NH4D)
For a long time the copyright held over the song "Happy Birthday to you" has been held up by those opposed to copyright in its current form as a clear example of copyright abuse. The song is based on a tune written before 1893 by Mildred Hill and Patty Hill titles "Good Morning to All". Today the copyright for this song is claimed to be held by Warner/Chappell Music. Two years ago Warner/Chappell Music attempted to collect royalties from a company working on a documentary film. In a judgement handed down by U.S. District Judge George H. King the original copyright only covered the musical arrangement not the lyrics and the Happy Birthday song is now in the public domain.

Re: Inaccurate title: Happy birthday song was not copyrighted (Score: 1)

by bryan@pipedot.org on 2015-09-25 15:57 (#NJ6D)

Either way, it was about time. Holding up copyright expiration (1976 and 1998) on recent works is bad enough. Somehow claiming they have an exclusive hold on a tune from 1893 is appalling.
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