The author of the lyrics to “I Love You,” the song popularized by a six-foot-tall purple dinosaur, cannot recover for her attorney’s alleged malpractice in handling her negotiations with the producers of “Barney,” the Indiana Court of Appeals said March 15, because the author did not own the copyright in the lyrics when those negotiations took place ( Bernstein v. Glavin , Ind. Ct. App., 3d Dist., No. 45A03-9810-CV-445, 3/15/00).
In 1981, Lee Bernstein answered an advertisement soliciting submissions of original songs that could be sung to the tunes of popular children’s songs. Jean Warren of Warren Publishing told Bernstein that the songs would be compiled into a book, with the author of each song to receive a copy of the book and acknowledgment of her work. Bernstein subsequently submitted the lyrics to “I Love You,” which were intended to be sung to the tune of “This Old Man.”
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