The Stanford Law School Center for Internet and Society has put online the complete transcripts of all three days of J.K. Rowling and Warner Brothers' suit against RDR Books. I read the opening statements and the direct examination of Rowling, and found them fascinating. It's a rare treat to read the testimony of someone who can actually use words evocatively on the stand. Here's a sample from the first day's transcript, p. 107:
"1 Q. Do you have any views as to the impact the publication of
2 the Lexicon on your relationship with fan Web sites?
3 A. Very definitely, that's part of my concerns about fans. I,
4 perhaps naively, I accept that, perhaps naively, I was very
5 keen to maintain an almost entirely hands-off approach to the
6 online fandom where Harry Potter was concerned. And I say
7 'almost' because there are obvious boundaries of decency that
8 occasionally one would not like to see overstepped. But by and
9 large, I simply let it happen. Maybe that was naive, but I saw
10 massive positives in this amount of fan activity. I saw -- I
11 saw it as a great global book club with a lot of enthusiasm. I
12 met people who had made real life friendships through posting
13 on Harry Potter message boards, which I thought was a wonderful
14 thing. The fan sites, the fan created fan message boards and
15 the essays and so on, they were all fun.
16 I have never read online fan fiction. It is
17 uncomfortable to see your world restated in that way. But, I
18 never censored it or wanted to censor it. I let it all happen.
19 So, what will happen if it is decided in court that by
20 taking that approach, I effectively gave away copyright, I --
21 well, I know what will happen. Other authors -- I mean, other
22 authors are already much more draconian than I am with their
23 view of the Internet. Of course, other authors will look
24 sideways at what happened to me and say I need to exercise more
25 control. She was an idiot. She let it all go."
Hat-tip to Mugglenet.com for the link.