Wednesday, March 30, 2011

"We thought it fell under fair use." reports that, in order to distinguish synthetic DNA from its natural counterpart in an experiment they were doing, geneticist J. Craig Venter’s team coded several famous quotes into the synthetic version, including James Joyce’s: “To live, to err, to fall, to triumph, to recreate life out of life.” But, "after announcing their work, Venter explained, his team received a cease and desist letter from Joyce’s estate, saying that he’d used the Irish writer’s work without permission."

As James Grimmelmann notes in the first comment here, "you would think the Joyce estate had learned nothing from Shloss v. Joyce" (about which see here).