dukefett wrote:The difference is Wierd Al has to pay royalties for all the songwriters for the original songs. On his albums, about half of the songs are originals or he wouldn't make any money since all the original songwriters get royalties.
Without getting into too much detail, legally Weird Al does not have to get permission or pay royalties for parodies of other people's songs.
That being said, he probably finds it better as a practical matter to do so in order to avoid constant litigation. I'd imagine there's a similar motive behind shirt.woot's rejection of parodies in derbies.
Also, with Weird Al, there's the issue of his parodies often not focusing particularly on the song he's using, so perhaps that wasn't the best example. Family Guy Star Wars stuff maybe? Although Fox...so...anyway the point is that fair use does protect parodies, but a judge has to rule that the parody is a comment on the original work, which is often not completely clear. Although, I think this particular shirt is pretty obviously a comment on the game it's parodying.