LAPD wants to use “IP” just like Coca-Cola

Susan Stamberg interviews the LA City Attorney who is trying to use “intellectual property law” to influence the way upcoming CBS and NBC television shows portray the police and fire departments.

Although he denies wanting editorial control (influence), Rocky Delgadillo hopes his strategy will set an example of how cities can protect their image while collecting royalties for their taxpayers.


Additional LAPD IP Coverage

IP as “Intellectual Protectionism”#

This case is interesting because it demonstrates a distinction between creative rights
and “intellectual property”.

  • creative rights, which are a limited, government-granted monopoly designed to
    create an incentive for people to create (i.e. American copyright)
  • Intellectual Property” which give entities the right to control public discourse
    (i.e. strong trademark laws)

Sir, you have insulted my honour! I demand satisfaction. #

Some lawyers start to sound like royal knights who protect the “honour” of their corporate sovereigns.

Homer Simpson’s dueling glove entitled him to all sorts of privileges (at least for
the first half of the episode).

Homer: Oh that’s it. You insulted my honour!
I demand satisfaction. I challenge you to a duel!

Moe: A duel? Isn’t that a little extreme? Here, here, have a free beer.

Homer: Really? But you’ve never given anyone a free beer.

Moe: Yeah, ain’t never been slapped with no duelling glove either.

Intellectual Property Laws are not always bad. Trademarks can prevent consumers from being confused by misleading labels. The problem arises when those demanding “royalties”
expect to be treated like “royalty”
. #