Intellectual Property Blog

Dance Moves – Can You Claim Copyright Infringement?

Written by Guest Author, Marks Gray Associate Logan McEwen The boundaries of copyright law are tested in an increasingly digital world, but digital arts can give a new perspective on old issues. Like the question: can you claim copyright infringement for a dance move? That is the question raised by claims against the videogame Fortnite from entertainers Alfonso Ribeiro (Carlton, Fresh Prince of Bel Air), Terrence Ferguson (rapper 2 Milly), and Russell Horning (Backpack Kid). […]

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Companies Should Take Note of This Street Artist Win

A Los Angeles federal judge recently rejected General Motors’ attempt to dismiss a lawsuit by a street artist whose parking garage mural was used in a 2016 Cadillac ad campaign without permission. That may seem like no big deal – after all, it’s not like the artist has won the case yet. However, it could open the floodgates for other street artists to sue for damages when their work is depicted without their permission. The […]

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Copyrighting a Skyline: Two Sample Cases

You may not be surprised to learn that you cannot copyright a skyline. However, you can certainly copyright photographs that are taken of that skyline. If someone takes your image without your permission and uses it, you may have grounds for a copyright infringement lawsuit. But copyright law is complex, so how you approach your lawsuit can make a huge difference. Here are two real cases involving skyline photographs – with opposite outcomes. Case One: […]

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Tips for Business Owners: Document the Transfer, Assignment, or License of Your Copyrights

The second you create an original work, you own the copyright for that work. It does not need to be registered for you to have ownership. It is your intellectual property. But what if you want someone else to have control over the copyright? Or maybe you want to license some of the rights so someone else can use the asset? How does that work? Does the U.S. Copyright Office have some kind of special […]

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Tips for Business Owners: Understand How Work Made for Hire Impacts Your Intellectual Property

Understanding and maximizing your company’s intellectual property (IP) assets, which include trademarks, copyrights, patents, and trade secrets, is crucial as you operate and expand your business. This knowledge will help you identify and pursue remedies if someone uses your IP assets without authorization. Your IP assets can also help establish the value of your company when taking out a loan, partnering with another company, or selling your business. Conduct an audit to determine what intellectual […]

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No, a Monkey Cannot Sue for Copyright Infringement

It’s a question that has been on everyone’s mind: can a monkey own the copyright to its own selfie? A recent case set out to find the answer. The plaintiff was Naruto, a crested macaque living in an Indonesian reserve. The defendant was David Slater, a photographer who left his camera unattended, only to have Naruto pick it up and snap some (pretty adorable) selfies. So, who owns the copyright to those images? The People […]

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