'Charlie Brown Christmas' song owners sue Dollywood: Reports

Originally published at: https://boingboing.net/2019/10/10/charlie-brown-christmas-so.html


This’ll be settled out of court. They’ll pay some fines/fees, and then get proper licensing sorted out through ASCAP. It’s severely doubtful either side is going to want to actually go to trial. The Dollywood side is going to say it’s an accident and want to pay up, and the Mendelson / Guaraldi side just wants proper credit and royalties.


Good Grief!


It’s possible the reason they are making a big deal of it is that the peanuts characters have their own theme parks. Knotts berry farm (and I think some other parks too?) has a whole section of kids rides and they do special live shows with costumes characters at Christmas using the songs from that special. So it’s maybe not just about ascap royalties, but maybe trying to prevent the brand from being used in a theme park that hasn’t paid for that branding.

Edit: a link to one of those shows at Knotts. I didn’t find specifically that Guaraldi music but at 8:40 they play the “christmastime is here” song : https://youtu.be/-gxH2MuWr8Y

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I would think this would be an excellent test case for something akin to “trademark dilution™”, but for copyright. Charlie Brown Christmas is so pervasive around the season that I have a hard time believing that these audiences would be able to report later what they heard. Like trying to get a person to report on how many mailboxes they passed on their way to work.

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