Copyright Waffling with Dr Ben Marsh (of the Marsh Family)

Waffling about copyright with Ben Marsh

Last week I will confess to being extremely over-excited and a little star struck as we recorded our 15th Copyright Waffle podcast, this time with Dr Ben Marsh from the University of Kent. For those who don’t know, Ben is a historian, but he’s also become a lockdown internet sensation along with his fabulous musical family (The Marsh Family). It all started last year when they shared a video of them singing a parody version of the Les Miserables song, One More Day, describing their lockdown experiences. But they have gone on to record a series of parody songs including a rendition of Leonard Cohen’s Hallelujah (Have the New Jab) and Bonnie Tyler’s Total Eclipse of the Heart (Totally fixed where we are) and most recently an original sea shanty that Ben insists is not a sea shanty. You can see all their recordings on their You Tube channel.

I love a musical parody and like many people I’ve enjoyed the Marsh family’s singing a lot since I first saw their version of ‘One More Day’ on Facebook last year. I then discovered the family were local to me, and that, like Chris, Ben worked at the University of Kent. Chris had initially been in touch with Ben last year talking about parody exceptions in UK law. More recently, I noticed Ben putting out a late night plea on Twitter for help with copyright matters after their version of Hallelujah had been taken down from YouTube. Chris got in touch again to help and thanks to a host of supportive people (who Ben name checks in his Copyright Heroes) their version was reinstated.

Here are some links to the things we discussed with Ben in the interview:

We’re Not Singing Sea Shanties, The Marsh Family Comic Relief song –
Craig, C. and Tarantino, B. ‘An Hundred Stories in Ten Days’: COVID-19 Lessons for Culture, Learning, and Copyright Law
House of Lords Inquiry into Freedom of Expression online –

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