The Empire Strikes Bach

Sony has claimed that it owns the copyright for the works of Johann Sebastian Bach—more than 1,100 of them.

Now, you might think the fact that Bach died in 1750 would put his music safely in the public domain, seeing as how it’s 178 years out of copyright (under the American system of author’s death plus 70 years). But there the story was, appearing in several news accounts this past week, all prompted by a Boing Boing report about how “you can’t play Bach on Youtube” without getting served with a takedown notice. Even the jazz historian Ted Gioia, as sane a music critic as exists these days, was prompted to tweet “Sony says they own his compositions.”

Why is Fortnite Taking Over the World?

Fortnite is the latest video game craze to sweep the nation.

The battle-royale third-person shooter is one of the most popular and fastest growing games on the planet. It’s the most played game on Xbox. It’s the most downloaded free game on PlayStation. The mobile version debuted at number 1 on the iTunes charts in 13 countries when it dropped in March. It’s still at number 4 on the iTunes charts, ahead of apps like Gmail, Facebook, Snapchat, Spotify, and Netflix.