COPYRIGHT BASICSBand Business Crash CourseNovember 3, 2012Dana Myers, Esq.
COPYRIGHT: WHAT IS IT? Copyright is a limited duration monopoly that the government provides to people that create original works. Bundle of Rights Reproduce the work Prepare derivative works Distribute copies by sale, rental, lease, or other transfer of ownership Perform the work publicly Display the work publicly Perform the work publicly via digital audio transmission (audio recordings) Copyright only extends to the intellectual property – not the physical work itself. The sale of the only copy of a painting of the Golden Gate Bridge does not transfer ownership in the copyright Why is copyright important? Without copyright, anyone could exploit (and profit from) your own work
CREATING COPYRIGHT What can be copyrighted? Original works of authorship Fixed in a tangible form of expression Things that cannot be copyrighted Ideas (as opposed to an expression of an idea) Words, short phrases, slogans, band names… Genres of music Copyright exists the moment the work is created in a fixed form Copyright immediately becomes the property of the author who created the work If more than one person created the work, the “default” is that both parties hold an equal share in the ownership of the work. Songs have 2 types of copyrights involved Song Copyright Sound Recording Copyright Albums are considered “collective works” – several individual works (which can all be copyrighted) arranged or assembled in a special way. Collective works are copyrightable.
BENEFITS OF REGISTRATION Establishes a public record of the copyright claim Required before initiating an infringement lawsuit “Prima facie” evidence of the validity of the copyright if made before or within 5 years of publication Establishes the right to recover statutory damages and attorney’s fees if registration is made within 3 months of publication
EXERCISE What elements must be present for a work to be eligible for copyright protection? A. Original work of authorship B. Fixed in a tangible medium C. Approval from a copyright judge D. All of the above E. Both A and B are correct Which of the following are exclusive rights in copyrighted musical works: The right to reproduce the copyrighted work The right to prepare derivative works based upon the copyrighted work The right to defame another individual or group with the copyrighted work The right to distribute copies of the copyrighted work The right to perform the copyrighted work publicly What are the various copyrights involved with the release of your musical act’s debut album onto CD, for which you designed all of the artwork and produced the accompanying music video?