News & Resources

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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Scandalous Trademarks: The Government Strikes Back

Back in March of this year, I wrote about Erik Brunetti successfully arguing to the US Court of Appeals for the Federal Circuit that he should be approved to register the mark “Fuct” for clothing items, in part because the provision under the Lanham Act preventing him from doing so was unconstitutional. In the Federal Circuit court’s written opinion, they agreed that the provision on immoral and scandalous marks did, in fact, violate free speech […]

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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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Tips for Business Owners: Carefully Select and Protect Trademarks

A trademark identifies a product’s source. It helps customers differentiate your business from competitors. If you develop a good reputation, customers know they can trust products bearing your trademark. Service marks are close cousins to trademarks and serve a similar purpose. They just identify the source of services, instead of goods. But not all logos or business names qualify for registration with the United States Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO) and the accompanying protections. Consider […]

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Tips for Business Owners: 3 Must-Do’s When Creating Your Logo

A recognizable logo allows you to advertise your business anywhere – on your storefront sign, website, business cards, employee ID cards, in-store signage, product packaging, print ads, social media accounts, and so many more places. It is a crucial part of branding, so businesses should take the time to ensure it is done right. But before you commit to any concept for your logo, work with an intellectual property lawyer to do a trademark search. […]

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