Sometimes you need the real thing

Britney recorded Sometimes in 1999. A songwriter claims he wrote it in 1990, officially copyrighting it in 2003, but copyrighting it by the “Poor Man’s Copyright” in 1990.

What is the Poor Man’s Copyright? Putting something in an envelope and mailing it to yourself. The argument goes: “The date’s on the envelope, this is proof of when I wrote it.”

Yeah? It’s possible to send an unsealed envelope to yourself, get a postmark on it, and later put something in that envelope, and claim you wrote it. Not only is it possible, it’s easy. I’ll be shocked if the PMC alone wins this guy’s case. There’s also an alleged email from Britney admitting to the theft, but there’s no date on the email, and emails are also easy to forge.

If he wins without providing something more substantial, I’m going to send myself an unsealed envelope, and get rich a few years from now.

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