Search AIMP site
Job Offerings
Industry News
Latin Corner

Copyright Corner


November 12, 2019

The CCC presents: Fair Use: Is it REALLY Free??? When is Fair Use NOT Fair?


The California Copyright Conference



A panel discussion on Fair Use, Derivative Works, and Transformative Musical and Artistic Works. The ins and outs of where these various creations fall on the Fair Use spectrum.

Tuesday, November 12, 2019

6:15 PM Check-In ? 6:30 PM – 7:30 PM Cocktail Hour ? 7:30 PM – 9:00 PM Dinner & Panel Discussion


Courtyard Marriott

15433 Ventura Blvd. Sherman Oaks, CA 91403 ($5 parking available at venue)




   Paula Savastano — Sr. Director Copyright and Royalties | Angry Mob Music, LLC

Judith Finell — Musicologist and President | Judith Finell Music Services, Inc. 


Michael Donaldson, Esq. — Attorney at Law | Donaldson + Callif, LLP

Jaqueline Charlesworth, Esq. — Attorney at Law | Alter, Kendrick, & Baron LLP

Evan M. Greenspan — President/CEO | EMG Music Clearance




Michael Donaldson, Esq. — Attorney at Law | Donaldson + Callif, LLP

Michael Donaldson founded Donaldson & Callif with Lisa Callif in 2008. The firm focuses on all aspects of independent film with a special focus on fair use opinions and other clearance issues in both scripted and documentary films. In 2018 alone, the firm worked on over 350 films including 250 documentaries. Such films are festival favorites. Twenty-nine films, including (20) documentaries worked on by our firm were exhibited earlier this year at the Sundance film Festival – representing 71% percent of the documentaries shown at the festival. Sixteen (16) films worked on by our firm were exhibited at the SXSW Festival in March 2019. Thirty-nine films including thirty-one  (31) documentaries worked on by our firm were exhibited at the Tribeca Film Festival in April-May 2019. The firm has worked on a number of Oscar nominees and winners, including recent films Free Solo(2019), Minding the Gap (2019), Icarus (2018), O.J.: Made in America (2017) and 20 Feet from Stardom (2014).

In 2007, on a pro bono basis, Donaldson negotiated with insurance companies to provide errors and omissions policies to cover material used pursuant to fair use. The process – still used to this day – made insurance available by all companies offering errors and omissions insurance to filmmakers provided the insurance application is accompanied by an opinion letter from a recognized law firm indicating that the material contained in the film was used according to the statute and within the case law defining fair use.

Again on a pro bono basis, Donaldson successfully argued to the United States Copyright Office that Documentary filmmakers should be exempted from criminal portions of DMCA so that they could rip DVDs to obtain material to be used pursuant to fair use. The request for an exemption was approved in 2009. Three years later, in 2012, this exemption was expanded to include streaming services. In 2015, the scope expanded to including Blue Rays. In 2018, fictional films were also exempted so that any type of film is now covered except an unscripted fictional program.

In his portion of the panel, Donaldson will present a shorthand way for you to determine whether a use of material falls within the fair use doctrine or not.  Too often, filmmakers who are not adequately represented claim fair use when it simply doesn’t exist for the use in question.


Jacqueline C. Charlesworth, Esq. | Partner at Alter, Kendrick & Baron, LLP

Jacqueline C. Charlesworth, a partner at Alter, Kendrick & Baron, LLP, is a litigator and transactional attorney whose practice is focused on music, film and other intellectual property. Previously, Ms. Charlesworth served as General Counsel and Associate Register of Copyrights of the U.S. Copyright Office. She is also a visiting lecturer at Yale Law School, where she teaches music law with Lisa Alter.

In addition to litigating precedent-setting copyright cases, Ms. Charlesworth is a sophisticated dealmaker and advisor on legislative issues in the areas of music and copyright. In 2018, she was named Billboard Woman Executive of the Year for her critical role in crafting and securing passage of the Music Modernization Act, landmark legislation to update U.S. music licensing rules.

At the Copyright Office, Ms. Charlesworth had primary responsibility for interpretation of the U.S. Copyright Act. As General Counsel, she oversaw a wide range of litigation, legislative, regulatory, and policy matters, including the Office’s participation in Supreme Court cases, rulemaking proceedings, and copyright registration and termination issues. She also advised Congress on copyright-related legislation and policy concerns. During her tenure, she produced an influential study on the U.S. music licensing system, Copyright and the Music Marketplace, which helped set the stage for legislative reform.

Before joining the Copyright Office, Ms. Charlesworth was in private practice, where she handled IP-related litigation and transactional matters. She also served as Senior Vice President and General Counsel of the National Music Publishers’ Association and Senior Vice President and General Counsel of The Harry Fox Agency.

Ms. Charlesworth received a B.A. from Brown University and a J.D. from Yale Law School, where she was an Executive Committee Editor of The Yale Law Journal and a founding member of the Yale Journal of Law & Feminism. Following law school, she clerked for Judge Miriam Goldman Cedarbaum of the U.S. District Court for the Southern District of New York and Judge Betty B. Fletcher of the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit.


Evan M. Greenspan | President and CEO | EMG Music Clearance

Evan M. Greenspan holds a B.A. in musicology from the University of Pennsylvania and an MFA from UCLA. He was the former head of music for Alan Landsburg Productions, Bob Banner Associates, and “Star Search.” He is a guest lecturer at UCLA, USC, Southern Methodist University and the Boalt College of Law. He is also a composer/publisher member of ASCAP, Past-President of the California Copyright Conference and is biographied in Who’s Who in the World.


Questions? Email us at questions@theccc.org

Login now to register for events and access your members area.
AIMP Twitter follow page AIMP Linked In group page AIMP Facebook page
Calendar of Events
Members Blog Posts
Free Event 7/15, 5pm CDT w/ publishers Shar'n Clark & Sherrill Blackman
by N. Deckant
View Full Post

Synchtank launches Royalty Accounting Platform IRIS
by J. Jordan
View Full Post

See all Posts
AIMP Supports The MMA's MLC In a recently issued joint statement, the Association of Independent Music Publishers officials --National Chair and Los Angeles C …

View More

The Music Modernization Act H.R. 1551 (formerly S. 2823), the Orrin G. Hatch-Bob Goodlatte Music Modernization Act: The bill was signed into law on October 11 …

View More