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A FEW TIPS re managing copyright, trademarks and intellectual property  [Please note, the postings on this blog are for informational purposes only and do not constitute legal advice]   ...follow and subscribe to this blog on wordpress

Entries in Contracts (13)

Monday
Aug312015

New Rules for Creative Revenue

Creative revenue streams – Here are a few of my favorites:FullSizeRender (8)

  • Inexpensive monthly subscription fees for access to video tutorials (for example teaching folks to use photography equipment or to play an instrument)
  • Parlaying social media followers into an eager audience for a book launch.
  • Composing music scores for videos and films. (It’s often much more economical for film and video makers to commission original compositions than to try and get rights to popular songs.  When I saw a preview of the documentary “Doing It In The Park: Pick-Up Basketball New York City” one of the filmmakers shared that he wished he’d commissioned an all original score from the outset).
  • Demonstration YouTube videos that include a retailer affiliate link. (Retailer affiliate links make money when folks click the link and make a purchase).

I believe that smart, creative, entrepreneurial folks can rise to the top, get noticed and make money (if they want to).

BY: Vanessa Kaster, Esq., LL.M.

vk@kasterlegal.com

See also: “How to write a © Copyright Notice and Why to Use it” at http://wp.me/p10nNq-18; Posts on trademark topics for new businesses: https://goo.gl/xqJrOA; #creativerevenue, #valueyourart, #valueyou; @iplegalfreebies and www. iplegalfreebies.wordpress.com.

Monday
Apr062015

Copyright & Contracts Outline

How To Write a © Copyright Notice --> http://wp.me/p10nNq-18

TATS Cru Graffiti Mural (Uses © right!) --> http://wp.me/p10nNq-ga

Brokenhearted Over Not Properly Copyrighting Work --> http://wp.me/p10nNq-vf

Copyright Protection only costs $35 --> http://wp.me/p10nNq-13

Copyright ownership/Monkey Self Portrait --> http://wp.me/p10nNq-b5

Inadvertently Give Rights Away By Posting Online?  --> http://wp.me/p10nNq-Dr

Exhibition Featuring Instagram Photos? --> http://wp.me/p10nNq-En

Copyright and Transformative Use --> http://wp.me/p10nNq-dv

Copyright Protection starts automatically --> http://wp.me/p10nNq-7H 

Get agreements signed --> http://wp.me/p10nNq-2g   

Unleashing viral whiplash instead of a lawsuit --> http://wp.me/p10nNq-sG

 

Other Topics:

What do you do if you get a Cease and Desist Letter --> http://wp.me/p10nNq-1B

Works in the Public Domain are Free to Use --> http://wp.me/p10nNq-ft

Google Images search tool -->  http://www.google.com/imghp

Fair Use --> http://wp.me/p10nNq-3R

Social Media --> http://wp.me/p10nNq-er

Photo Releases --> http://wp.me/p10nNq-J

All Media Use --> http://wp.me/p10nNq-2B

Copyright registration: the US Copyright Office --> http://www.copyright.gov/

Thursday
May082014

Federation Bells Call For Compositions (nice ring to their Terms & Conditions)

The Federation Bells park in Melbourne has launched an open call for composers to submit compositions to be Fed bells picplayed on a fascinating instillation of 39 bells.

The Federation Bells are a (recently refurbished) collection of 39 bronze upturned bells mounted on poles in a grid arrangement at Birrarung Marr in central Melbourne. They can be played using a sophisticated electromechanical system, in which internal hammers strike the bells, triggered by simple MIDI commands.

Submitted compositions can be heard daily on an evolving weekly schedule that is posted online.  My friend Rob Waring's composition titled, Daybreak at Birrarung Marr, is currently scheduled to play daily. (Bravo, Rob!)

To encourage folks to submit compositions, the Federation Bells website features an online composition tool that lets folks compose music for the 39 bells.  A composer's manual and guide is also posted on their website at http://federationbells.com.au/media/Federation-Bells-Composers-Manual.pdf.

The Terms and Conditions for submitting a composition also have a nice ring to them.  By submitting a composition folks agree to: 1)  grant a license allowing their composition to be played on the bell instillation for one year (composer retains ownership) and 2) submit their composition freely without seeking any further consideration.  Additionally, some folks may earn royalties if they are a member of APRA (or an equivalent society) and there is no promise made that submitted compositions will be performed.  (Terms and Conditions are always subject to change).

An image of the Terms and Conditions from the websiteEvidently, over a hundred compositions have already been submitted.  As I type this, I am singing to myself, "ding dong merrily on high in heaven the bells are ringing."  The melody and lyric of this carol are fitting.

BY: Vanessa Kaster, Esq., LL.M.

vk@kasterlegal.com

See also: Rob Waring’s website http://home.broadpark.no/~rwaring/; Information about composing for the Federation Bells at http://federationbells.com.au/play-the-bells/composing-for-the-bells; http://federationbells.com.au/media/Federation-Bells-Composers-Manual.pdf ; and http://composer.federationbells.com.au/FederationBells.html; @iplegalfreebies and www.iplegalfreebies.wordpress.com.

Wednesday
Dec182013

Happy Holidays from Vanessa: vk@kasterlegal.com

Happy Holidays 2013 from vk@kasterlegal.com

Wishing you and yours a Happy Holidays! 

Thank you for following my blog http://iplegalfreebies.wordpress.com/!

Photo Credit: This photograph was taken by my friend Nancy (http://nancyadler.com/)

Monday
Jul222013

Getting Paid for… Co-Creating awesome stuff like the game Twister and Superman

Getting paid for creating wildly successful stuff can take many forms and is an important part of the creative process. Often stuff that becomes wildly successful (like the Superman comic and the game Twister) start out as humble creative endeavors created by two co-creators. For example: superman

  • SUPERMAN was created by Seigel and Schuster who created a comic book out of four weeks worth of comic strips that they couldn’t sell. They sold the comic book along with their rights to the creation for $130. (long-running litigation has ensued regarding the existence, validity and scope of an agreement transferring the rights to Superman).
  • TWISTER was created by Foley (a game designer) and Rabens (an artist) who wetwisterre awarded a US Patent (No. 3,454,279) for their invention of an “apparatus for playing a game wherein the players constitute the game pieces.” Evidently Foley did not receive royalties for the game; however, he did negotiate a buyout and sold his rights. (According to a Mr. Foley’s obituary this past week, he accepted about $27,000 in a negotiated buyout).

It’s interesting to compare these deals. Did the creators have any idea that their creations would become iconic? Probably not. At least not in the case of Superman. If Superman's co-creators had known how famous their creation would become, they probably would have negotiated a higher price, residual rights, royalties and possibly reserved merchandising rights.

Personally, I am a big fan of both Superman and Twister! I am in awe of the creative minds who created these gems... and I encourage folks to negotiate creative deals to maximize revenue from their creations. You never know.... your creation could become a cultural icon.

For more information on the ongoing Superman litigation, see also, http://dockets.justia.com/docket/california/cacdce/2:2004cv08400/166317/; http://robot6.comicbookresources.com/2013/03/superman-legal-battle-isnt-over-yet-siegels-try-a-new-strategy/; http://www.businessweek.com/articles/2013-06-13/marc-toberoff-supermans-lawyer; @iplegalfreebies and www.iplegalfreebies.wordpress.com.

BY: Vanessa Kaster, Esq., LL.M.

vk@kasterlegal.com