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Society & Culture
Virtual Legality Episode 541

Contempt of Court?! Did Destiny's Composer Steal His Own Music?

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4w Sep 17, 2021
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Marty O'Donnell is one of the best known composers of video game music in its history, responsible for not only the iconic Halo hymn but also the baseline for Destiny's own unique sound.

But in falling out with game developer Bungie in 2014, Mr. O'Donnell lost the rights to the music he had created for such projects as a result copyright law (and "work made for hire"). But when, in 2019 he started posting materials he had told the court he did not possess, well...things got worse.

In respect of obeying court orders, it should be "The Music of the Fears"...in Virtual Legality.

#Bungie #ODonnell #Music


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Discussed in this episode:
"Former Bungie composer Marty O'Donnell found in contempt of court over use of Destiny assets"
Eurogamer - September 16, 2021
https://www.eurogamer.net/articles/2021-09-16-former-bungie-composer-marty-odonnell-found-in-contempt-of-court-over-use-of-destiny-assets

"Ex-Bungie composer Marty O’Donnell wins epic legal fight with former bosses"
GamesBeat - September 4, 2015
https://venturebeat.com/2015/09/04/ex-bungie-composer-marty-odonnell-wins-epic-legal-fight-with-former-bosses/

"To be clear..."
Tweet - June 11, 2013 - Marty O'Donnell
https://twitter.com/MartyTheElder/status/344620774235185152

"I'm saddened..."
Tweet - April 16, 2014 - Marty O'Donnell
https://twitter.com/MartyTheElder/status/456303189998841856

"The day the music died: When Bungie fired Marty O'Donnell"
Eurogamer - April 13, 2016
https://www.eurogamer.net/articles/2016-04-12-the-day-the-music-died-when-bungie-fired-marty-odonnell

"Hmm...better find a way to download Music of the Spheres."
Tweet - April 28, 2018 - Marty O'Donnell
https://twitter.com/MartyTheElder/status/990399738389254144

"Bungie says it's finally releasing Destiny's Music of the Spheres"
Eurogamer - April 30, 2018
https://www.eurogamer.net/articles/2018-04-30-bungie-says-its-finally-releasing-destinys-music-of-the-spheres

"Works Made for Hire"
Copyright Office Circular
https://www.copyright.gov/circs/circ09.pdf

Form of Consulting Agreement
SEC EDGAR Database
https://www.sec.gov/Archives/edgar/data/1590418/000168316819000690/focus_ex9906.htm


"Virtual Legality" is a continuing series discussing the law, video games, software, and everything digital, hosted by Richard Hoeg, of the Hoeg Law Business Law Firm (Hoeg Law).

CHECK OUT THE REST OF VIRTUAL LEGALITY HERE:
https://www.youtube.com/playlist?list=PL1zDCgJzZUy9YAU61GoW-00K0TJOGnPCo

DISCUSSION IS PROVIDED FOR INFORMATIONAL PURPOSES ONLY AND IS NOT TO BE CONSTRUED AS LEGAL ADVICE. INDIVIDUALS INTERESTED IN THE LEGAL TOPICS DISCUSSED IN THIS VIDEO SHOULD CONSULT WITH THEIR OWN COUNSEL.


DESIGN WORK
Joe Ellis (Logo Design)
Chris Leroux (Motion Graphics)
For more information: contact Chris at @Chrisleroux on Twitter.

PODCAST VERSIONS ALSO AVAILABLE

Table of Contents

Timecode Title
00:00 Introduction
01:50 A Contentious History
15:41 Self-Help and Contempt of Court
21:01 Works Made for Hire and Employer Ownership
26:35 Conclusion

About Hoeg Law

The Hoeg Law Firm is a business law firm with big law experience and a small firm approach focusing on start-ups, technology, financing, and everything else a business might need.


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