As reported by Associated Press, late writer Edith Newlin’s daughters, Ellen Newlin Chase and Margaret Chase Perry, filed a lawsuit in Manhattan Federal Court on Monday claiming the lyrics of the poem “Soft Kitty” have been used without permission on the Television show “The big Bang Theory”.
Edith’s daughter claimed the CBS and other media related companied are violating the copyrights. The song has been used on at least eight episodes of “The Big Bang Theory” since March 2008. They are also using the song in advertising show merchandise including air fresheners, mugs, refrigerator magnets, mobile phone covers, mouse pads, wallets, singing plush toys, and other products without paying the rights.
Edith, a New Hampshire teacher wrote the poem around 1983, and Wills Music published the poem in a book of nursery school rhymes in 1937. The poem was written and published, named “Warm Kitty”.
Margaret and Ellen complaint the show producer and distributors have to pay unspecified damages. As per the lawsuit, in the year 2007, Warner Bros Entertainment and other producers of the show decided to use the lyrics and sought permission from Wills Music Co. (Florence, Kentucky-based company who had published the lyrics in the book, “Songs for the Nursery School.”) according to ABC News.
The lawsuit says Wills Music used the lyrics without permission or consulted from Newlin’s Heirs, whereas it is clearly mentioned in the acknowledgement page of the book that lyrics copyright owned by the author Edith Newlin.
According to the lawsuit, the original poem lyrics “Warm kitty, soft kitty / Little ball of fur / Sleepy kitty, Happy Kitty / Purr! Purr! Purr!” and Newlin’s version, the song named “Warm Kitty” and lyrics “Warm kitty, Soft kitty/ Little ball of fur/ Sleepy Kitty, Happy Kitty/Purr! Purr! Purr!,” TMZ a picture of the original Newlin lyrics page.
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