News

Several surprises lurk in federal copyright law that are often revealed to employers after it is too late to avoid harsh consequences.  Most employers mistakenly assume that everything an employee creates that may relate to the employee’s job automatically belongs to the employer.  Equally surprising to most employers is that nothing ­that an independent contractor…

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Companies sometimes pay large sums of money to independent contractors to create a custom software program and mistakenly assume that they own the result. Many companies have valuable intellectual property developed within their business, one of which is rights in copyrighted materials. Copyrights do not involve just novels and artwork; they can include software programs,…

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The Second Circuit (an important circuit) recently decided FOREST PARK PICTURES v. UNIVERSAL TELEVISION NETWORK, INC. (June 26, 2012), allowing a “pitch man” to overcome a dismissal of his law suit that claimed Universal took his idea for a television show without paying for it. Raw ideas that cannot be patented (such as ideas for…

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In University of Alabama v New Life Art, the 11th Circuit Court of Appeals resolved a portion of a long standing dispute over the protection afforded authentic reproductions of college uniforms.  A painter made paintings (and calendars) accurately depicting University of Alabama games.  For many years this practice was unlicensed, but done with the knowledge…

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