Category 2: Sampling popular culture to portray societal conditions

Money for Nothing

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In Money for Nothing, Kembrew McLeod argued that popular music stars were being chosen for their ability to cross-promote their work.

McLeod claimed fair use for advertisements, album covers and television programming because he was making a critique of the media products themselves, as examples of a cultural trend.

Game Over

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In Game Over, a documentary about the social effects of video games, Nina Huntemann quoted several video games to make the point that they have become even more realistic. The Media Education Foundation employed fair use, because these quotes provide a context for the filmmaker’s critical analysis of this kind of media.

Merchants of Cool

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In the Frontline documentary “Merchants of Cool,” director Barak Goodman quoted a teen horror movie, I Still Know What You Did Last Summer, in a report on the marketing of popular culture to teens.

He invoked fair use because this horror film is used as a point of reference for a discussion on the effect of media, sex and violence on teens.

Refrigerator Mothers

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In Refrigerator Mothers, about an era when mothers were blamed for their children’s autism, J.J. Hanley and David Simpson quoted popular films of the era. They claimed fair use because the film clips, by demonstrating social attitudes of the time, reflected popular culture of the era.