Claimed Lawyer ProfileQ&A
- Business Law
- Family Law
- Intellectual Property
Additional Practice Area
- General Civil
Jurisdictions Admitted to Practice
- District of Columbia
- The George Washington University Law School
- Maryland State Bar
- - Current
Websites & Blogs
10 Questions Answered
- Q. Is it possible to copyright a email address?
- A: No. Names cannot be registered for copyright. You could register it as a trademark though, if you plan on using it to identify goods or services.
- Q. I want to use pictures on my website, but don't want to pay for them. The bloggers don't seem to pay - why should I?
- A: If you don't want to pay, then you can either use photos you own the copyright to, use photos that are in the public domain, or ask nice and maybe they'll give you permission. (people always seem to forget that last option)
- Q. Can I get a star named after me and claim copyright to it?
- A: Star registries are a money making plot. You don't actually get anything as nobody has the "right" to name a star and there's no official star naming body. I could name Jupiter "Walter" but doing so would be meaningless as there is no statutory system or basis for naming the planets. It is just tradition. So as Mr Overhauser said, they may print a book and your name in the book would be part of their copyright, but the star remains whatever people call it by tradition.
- Q. I have a great plot for a James Bond novel / movie. Am I safe to write it without getting sued?
- A: Rights in a character are more complicated because they can be based on different portrayals, and they include trademark rights. If you were doing a radio play of a new James Bond story and you did it impersonating Sean Connery you'd have lots of other rights to clear first. As to writing "fan fiction" starring James Bond, it is technically violating copyright. Sir Ian Flemming created the character, and died in 1964. I have not looked into it specifically and there are issues with British copyright law and US copyright law, and the law has changed so further research would be necessary to be certain so this is for educational purposes only. Under current law (in both countries) copyright lasts the life of the author plus 70 years. If James Bond was created under present law, or for various reasons present law applies, then it will be under copyright until 2034.
- Q. Do you have to register a copyright to take advantage of copyright law?
- A: As Mr. Overhauser said, you don't have to register to "take advantage of copyright law." But if someone infringes your work, you DO have to have it registered before you can sue them for infringement. Registration is a necessary pre-requisite to filing a law suit but as far as selling, distributing, etc. the rights are yours to take advantage of in whatever clever way you can think of.
- Q. Should I put my name on each page of my lyrics before I copywrite
- A: It's copyRight, not copyWrite. It is the right to control or restrict the copying of your work. And you don't need to put your name on every page. I can't think of why you'd want to, unless the pages are loose and likely to fall apart.
- Q. I needing legal advice Copyrights Cases filed in District of Columbia?
- A: Feel free to contact me with specifics.
- Q. What is a copyright?
- A: LMGTFY http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Copyright
- Q. Are video records of township council meetings copyrighted?
- A: Probably. Check your local laws to see if they prohibit the state or the local government from holding copyrights. The Federal Government cannot get a copyright in its work, but this does not apply to state or local governments and the Federal Government can own copyrights that are assigned to it.
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