Coventry, CT asked in Copyright for Connecticut

Q: I attended a Bruce Springsteen concert years ago. He shouted, “Is there anyone alive out there?” Crowd cheered.

I have written a fictional manuscript and used that anecdote. A depressed character muses he wishes he felt alive. Since that show Springsteen has used the line “Is there anyone alive out there” in the song “Radio Nowhere.” Can I use the phrase or would that be a copyright infringement?

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1 Lawyer Answer
Max Lavit Rosenberg
Max Lavit Rosenberg
  • Stratford, CT
  • Licensed in Connecticut

A: I would imagine that the phrase is not copyrighted or trademarked and if there was a concern, you could likely say that it was under the “fair use” exception, seeing how it is short and not very original. I used to do standup comedy in NYC and often called out something similar. I would not worry.

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