Intellectual Property Blog

Copyright Fair Use: Distinction between Parody and Satire

Written by Guest Author, Marks Gray Associate Logan McEwen     In the United States, a copyright-protected work can be utilized without authorization of the copyright owner if it is a “fair use” of the copyright-protected work.  Fair uses of copyright-protected works generally fall into two categories: (i) commentary and criticism, or (ii) parody. The fair use exceptions balance between promoting the creation of art through copyright protection and not inhibiting freedom of speech.  Parody Parodies […]

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Filing a Copyright Registration for Architectural Works Is Now Easier

In the past, obtaining a copyright registration for architectural works was a long and annoying process. Designers would have to submit physical plans and paper applications to secure the rights to their design. In the digital age, these requirements became even more of a burden.  Fortunately, the US Copyright Office has adjusted its requirements to make filing for architectural works a lot easier. The new rules went into effect on May 23, 2019. What Is […]

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What’s Allowed under Fair Use of Copyright-Protected Work?

Copyright registrations protect owners’ original works from other people reproducing, distributing, displaying, and/or performing the original works or creating derivative works. But the laws surrounding copyright protection are not exactly sealed tight. References to copyright-protected work are all around us, and you can bet that most of those people did not get permission. So when is the use of copyrighted material okay? And when does it cross the line? The United States Copyright Act has […]

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Broadcasters: How to Protect Yourself from Photo Lawsuits

By Edward L. Birk and Crystal T. Broughan In a recent post, we wrote about the fast-paced world of broadcasting, made even faster by the Internet age, and how this has led to the temptation of pulling imagery from websites without confirming copyright and securing proper permission. The reuse of online content is very easy to accomplish. The consequences can be very painful to the bank account. According to Federal court listings, a comparison of […]

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Things You Cannot Copyright

Advancements in internet and new media technology have given rise to information and creative materials spreading faster and wider than ever before in history. In turn, the sheer amount of copyright-protected material has increased exponentially. Not surprisingly, litigation pertaining to copyright violations has exploded over the last decade as well. However, there are still a few areas to which copyright protection does not extend.   Before contacting the U.S. Copyright Office, there are two primary […]

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Jewelry Designs and Copyright Protection

Copyright law protects many different types of original artistic expressions that are original to the creator and fixed in a tangible form. Artistic pieces like earrings, necklaces, broaches, rings, and bracelets may be protected by copyright law if there are original creative elements that can be identified separately from the functional aspects of the piece of jewelry.  So the clasp on the necklace may not be protected, but the original design of the part of the […]

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