[Table of Contents] [Search]

[Date Prev][Date Next][Thread Prev][Thread Next][Date Index][Thread Index]


At 11:36 AM 5/28/97 -0400, you wrote:
>>This is indeed 'all wet'.  It provides no legal protection whatsover.
>>Derek L.
>Derek---I'd be interested in seeing the authority for your statement. My
>understanding is that the registration does not *confer* rights but just
>provides conclusive (I guess) proof of the latest possible date of
>creation. The unregistered copyright is just as valid as the registered
>one. The problem is proof of date. Any other probative evidence of date can
>also be used but may not be conclusive.  The failure to register injects a
>fact issue into the case which may be found against the creating artist but
>this is a question of evidence, not a question of the legal validity of the
>copyright. Obviously registration is the safest way to go and pretty well
>closes the door on the date question. But failure to register does not, in
>and of itself, sink the ship.
>Sam L.
>Sam Lanham (slanham@xxxxxxxx)
I think a key point needs to be made about the real need to register your
copyright or not.

If XYZ Corp. knowingly steals an original copyrighted work of yours and
makes a million dollars with it, you better hope that it is registered. If
it isn't, you still have the right to inform XYZ Corp. that the work is
yours, and is under copyright protection and you do not give your permission
for XYZ Corp. to profit from your work by continuing to use your work.  This
is the usual cease and desist letter. You can not demand payment of their
profits from your work prior to this notifcation, even if you in prove
ownership in court.  If however, you have registered your copyright and
someone steals you works knowingly, you have the right tostop XYZ Corp.*AND*
(THIS IS THE IMPORTANTANT PART) you also have the right to claim any profits
made by XYZ Corp. from the first violation of the copyright. Without
registration, you can only lay claim to profits AFTER notifcation.

It's a legal fight any way you slice it but the cash outcome can be very

A good intellectual property lawyer will tell you that mailing manuscripts
and notebooks to yourself is a complete waste of time and postage.  It has
no legal standing.  The practice of having your notebooks notarized was once
common among scientists and inventors but It took the inventor of the laser
25 years to realized his claim that way.  Even though he produced a working
laser before his two competors, they got the the Noibel Prize for their
patented design.  The true inventor had the idea and the device first, but
he was second to register his patent. Only by days.  His original design
patent was approved, challenged, taken away the Patent Office and after 25
years, returned by the same Patent Office after a long legal battle.  No joy
ride.  I think his first royalty was 25 million or so.

Register if you what full protection.


      M I C H A E L   M O R I N                  M.F.A., M.L.S.
    Director Celtic Press                Instructional Media Librarian
     Buffalo  New York                   D'Youville College Library
 Member Buffalo Free-Net Information Development Committee
       Member Buffalo Free-Net Executive Board of Directors

[Subject index] [Index for current month] [Table of Contents] [Search]