Common Law Copyright, and Conversation
Assume that "A" is a well known author and literary figure and that "B" is an author in his own right, but far less known than "A". "A" and "B" meet socially and engage in a stimulating conversation wherein thoughts and ideas are freely expressed and conclusions drawn. Sometime thereafter, "B" publishes excerpts from this conversation and "A" strongly desires to prevent such from being published and receiving publicity. To prevent publication of their conversation, "A" could proceed against "B" under several different causes of action. He could possibly allege breach of a fiduciary relationship, breach of implied contract, invasion of privacy, unfair competition, or breach of common law copyright. The last cause of action, common law copyright, is the subject of this paper.