PBS airing acclaimed doc on sampling versus copyright laws
Published: November 23, 2010 05:19PM
Updated: November 23, 2010 02:16PM


"Copyright Criminals," the acclaimed documentary that charts the history of sampling in hip-hop and its modern clashes with copyright law, will air on PBS’ Emmy Award-winning series “Independent Lens” the week of Nov. 29 (check local listings; for example, KUED will air it on its Comcast 115 channel at 6 p.m. on Dec. 1).

The film features interviews with Public Enemy’s Chuck D and Hank Shocklee, De La Soul, funk pioneer George Clinton (above), James Brown’s “Funky Drummer” Clyde Stubblefield, producer Steve Albini and many others.

The broadcast comes as creative technology advances on a near-weekly basis. When the last copyright law was passed in 1998, only 26 percent of homes had Internet access.

Meanwhile, artists like Girl Talk are shining bright lights on issues of copyright and creativity. Girl Talk’s new album, "All Day," released for free Nov. 15, includes more than 350 samples.

The film, which Rolling Stone’s Rob Sheffield called “amazing,” was screened at the Toronto International Film Festival. USA Today called Copyright Criminals “a compelling and insightful documentary illuminating both sides of a hotly debated issue.”