Behold, a legal brief written in Klingon
In a legal brief peppered with idioms written in the original Klingon, the Language Creation Society — a California nonprofit devoted to supporting "constructed languages" — is trying to convince a court that the alien language from "Star Trek" is a real, "living" form of communication.
The made-up language is at the heart of a big copyright case involving CBS and Paramount, which own the rights to the "Star Trek" franchise, and a group of filmmakers who are trying to produce their own, original "Star Trek" film. If the studios win the fight, it would deal a major blow to the crowdfunded movie and to subsequent fan creations.
The fan project, known as "Star Trek: Axanar," comes with a kind of extended trailer that features some spoken Klingon. CBS and Paramount have sued, alleging that the unlicensed use of Klingon amounts to copyright infringement.
"The producers of Axanar have publicly stated that they plan to make a fully-professional independent commercial Star Trek film using our intellectual property — that clearly is not allowed under copyright laws," said CBS and Paramount, in a joint statement.
The film's defenders say Klingon speakers are being suppressed by CBS and Paramount so that the companies can maintain total control over their intellectual property.
Here's a key passage in the Language Creation Society's brief.
on its website. More than 75,000 people have asked to be notified when it's finally available.
To win the argument, the film's defenders have to describe Klingon as a universal phenomenon that can't be copyrighted — just like the law prohibits the copyrighting of general "systems" and "methods of operation," according to Charles Duan, a copyright expert at the consumer group Public Knowledge.