TwitterPinterestInstagramGoogle PlusMembers login

Archive for the ‘Copyright’ Category

Once it’s created, it’s copyrighted

Wednesday, February 27th, 2019

Last week a post popped up in my Facebook feed that dealt with copyright.

A textile artist discovered that her original work had “inspired” someone to create a nearly identical piece of art. The copier thought that if she gave credit to the art’s originator at some point, it was okay. She did credit the original artist in a blog post. She also thought it was okay to enter her work into a contest. Well it’s not okay in either instance.

Late last year one of my pattern design clients shared that someone had created a nearly identical quilt to hers and was selling patterns. Again, the copier was inspired and didn’t see the harm in what she was doing.

In both these cases, the copiers infringed on copyright. They didn’t have the rights to make a copy. In neither case did the infringer even ask permission.

Unfortunately this topic comes up on a regular basis.



Read more…

Once It’s Created, It’s Copyrighted

Wednesday, January 14th, 2015

it's copyrighted

This past week I got a note from one of our members and a CABS attendee about a copyright situation with her guild. While I don’t know all the particulars, I do know this topic comes up on a regular basis.

 

I think it’s a matter of education. For some reason, people don’t seem to get it when it comes to crafts. Because our industry has always had a sharing nature, many people think everything should be shared. And, this becomes easier with the Internet. And, it’s, in many, many cases, illegal.

 

I always say that the basics of copyright are simple: if you don’t own the copyright, you don’t have the right to copy. And, basically everything created privately has a copyright, whether it is registered or not. Many people think copyright is about the loss of income to the artist. While copyright theft can have an impact on the artist’s income, It’s really about who decides what happens to your work. You, as the copyright owner, are the only one who can decide if and how it can be copied, adapted and distributed. Of course, copyright is more involved than that, and I think when faced with any question about copyright, your first step is to ask who owns the copyright.

 

What if you don’t know who owns the copyright? If the copyright was registered before 1978, the Copyright Office staff can search its records for you for a minimum fee of $400. If you are in Washington, DC, you can do this search at the Copyright Office without a charge. If the copyright was registered from 1978 to present, you can search online at the Copyright Office Website for the records.

 

How do you tell if a work is still subject to copyright? For the most part, if the work was created after Jan. 1, 1978, the copyright is in effect for the life of the creator plus 70 years. If the work was created prior to Jan. 1, 1978, copyright protection varies and the specifics are rather complex. You can read the details in various circulars from the Copyright Office Website. Here are just a few points. If the copyright was in effect before Jan. 1, 1964, it needed to be renewed during its 28th year of the first term of its copyright and then it maintained protection for a full 95-year term. If a work was not published or registered before Jan. 1, 1978, it entered the public domain on Jan. 1, 2003 (unless publication took place by Dec. 31, 2002). And, virtually all of the work published before 1923 is in the public domain. Here’s a link to a chart on the Cornell University Website showing copyright terms and public domain.

 

To learn more about copyright, here’s a link to the US Copyright Office Website. If you have specific questions about copyright, be sure to consult an attorney for clarification. Also, ICAP members have access to an intellectual property attorney for copyright concerns.

 

While the concepts are the same, my resources refer to US Copyright. For Canadians, Kathy Bissett maintains information on copyright in that country: http://www.kathleenbissett.com/copyright.html. And, for Australians, Brenda Gael Smith maintains a list of resources for that country: http://www.brendagaelsmith.com/resources/copyright/

 

If you are an artist, take time to educate your buyers and clients about copyright. If you’re a teacher or pattern designer, do the same. If we all continue to educate the public, then we’ll make a dent in the problem.

Please share your thoughts and experiences on copyright below.

 

– – – – – – – – – –

WANT TO USE THIS ARTICLE IN YOUR E-ZINE OR WEB SITE?

 

Please do! Just use it in its entirety and be sure to include the blurb below:

 

Morna McEver is the founder and CEO of the International Association of Creative Arts Professionals where creative arts entrepreneurs craft business success. Her weekly e-zine offers tips, techniques and inspiration to help you craft business success from your creative arts passion. You can sign up for a FREE subscription at http://www.creativeartsprofessional.com.

WANT TO SEE MORE ARTICLE LIKE THIS?

 

See the ICAP blog at http://www.creativeartsprofessionals.com/weblog/

 

What Is Copyright All About?

Wednesday, March 6th, 2013

Copyright for Morna

In the past few months I’ve heard from several teachers and pattern designers about problems with copyright issues. In a couple of the instances, students were copying the design and sharing the design with friends. Yes, we will continue to have this problem. I think it’s a matter of education. For some reason, people don’t seem to get it when it comes to crafts. Because our industry has always had a sharing nature, many people think everything should be shared. And, this becomes easier with the Internet. And, it’s, in many cases, illegal.

I always say that the basics of copyright are simple: if you don’t own the copyright, you don’t have the right to copy. And, basically everything created privately has a copyright, whether it is registered or not. Many people think copyright is about the loss of income to the artist. While copyright theft can have an impact on the artist’s income, It’s really about who decides what happens to your work. You, as the copyright owner, are the only one who can decide if and how it can be copied, adapted and distributed. Of course, copyright is more involved than that, and I think when faced with any question about copyright, your first step is to ask who owns the copyright.What if you don’t know who owns the copyright? If the copyright was registered before 1978, the Copyright Office staff can search its records for you for a minimum fee of $330. If you are in Washington, DC, you can do this search at the Copyright Office without a charge. If the copyright was registered from 1978 to present, you can search online at the Copyright Office Website for the records.How do you tell if a work is still subject to copyright? For the most part, if the work was created after Jan. 1, 1978, the copyright is in effect for the life of the creator plus 70 years. If the work was created prior to Jan. 1, 1978, copyright protection varies and the specifics are rather complex. You can read the details in various circulars from theCopyright Office Website. Here are just a few points. If the copyright was in effect before Jan. 1, 1964, it needed to be renewed during its 28th year of the first term of its copyright and then it maintained protection for a full 95-year term. If a work was not published or registered before Jan. 1, 1978, it entered the public domain on Jan. 1, 2003 (unless publication took place by Dec. 31, 2002). And, virtually all of the work published before 1923 is in the public domain. Here’s a link to a chart on the Cornell University Website showing copyright terms and public domain.To learn more about copyright, here’s a link to the US Copyright Office Website. If you have specific questions about copyright, be sure to consult an attorney for clarification. Also, IAPQ members have access to an intellectual property attorney for copyright concerns.

If you are an artist, take time to educate your buyers and clients about copyright. If you’re a teacher or pattern designer, do the same. If we all continue to educate the public, then we’ll make a dent in the problem.

Please share your thoughts and experiences on copyright below.

 

Copyright Basics

Wednesday, April 14th, 2010

Earlier this year, I attended a lecture and the quilt artist, in the course of showing her work, displayed the greeting card that inspired one particular piece. She had photocopied the card, enlarged it and then made a pattern for her work. I could see no discernible difference between the card and her work. Someone from the audience inquired as to whether or not that was a copyright violation. Rightly, the artist said that yes it was. She went on to explain that she had done this when she didn’t understand copyright. Today her work is inspired by her surroundings and she does her own original work, either from her own drawings or photographs. I’m glad someone asked her about copyright, but she missed a great opportunity to teach her audience the basics by bringing it up in the first place.

I want to share another situation. Years ago at a guild meeting, one member made a presentation on copyright and how it applied to quilters. It was thoughtful, and she covered the basics and more. She summed the presentation up by passing out copies of an article she had photocopied about copyright. Do you think she missed the point?

I always say that the basics of copyright are simple: if you don’t own the copyright, you don’t have the right to copy. Many people think copyright is about the loss of income to the artist. It’s really about who decides what happens to your work. You, as the copyright owner, are the only one who can decide if and how it can be copied, adapted and distributed. Of course, copyright is more involved than that, and I think when faced with any question about copyright, your first step is to ask who owns the copyright.

What if you don’t know who owns the copyright? If the copyright was registered before 1978, the Copyright Office staff can search its records for you for a minimum fee of $330. If you are in Washington, DC, you can do this search at the Copyright Office without a charge. If the copyright was registered from 1978 to present, you can search online at the Copyright Office Web site for the records.

How do you tell if a work is still subject to copyright? For the most part, if the work was created after Jan. 1, 1978, the copyright is in effect for the life of the creator plus 70 years. If the work was created prior to Jan. 1, 1978, copyright protection varies and the specifics are rather complex. You can read the details in various circulars from the Copyright Office Web site.  Here are just a few points. If the copyright was in effect before Jan. 1, 1964, it needed to be renewed during its 28th year of the first term of its copyright and then it maintained protection for a full 95-year term. If a work was not published or registered before Jan. 1, 1978, it entered the public domain on Jan. 1, 2003 (unless publication took place by Dec. 31, 2002). And, virtually all of the work published before 1923 is in the public domain. Here’s a link to a chart on the Cornell University Web site showing copyright terms and public domain.

To learn more about copyright, here’s a link to the US Copyright Office web site . If you have specific questions about copyright, be sure to consult an attorney for clarification. Also, IAPQ members have access to an intellectual property attorney for copyright concerns.
The International Association of Professional Quilters offers resources and networking opportunities for you to create a success from your quilting business. Learn about all the benefits of IAPQ membership here.

 

A Standing Ovation

Friday, October 10th, 2008

I’m still on a cloud after our teleclass on Tuesday evening. One of our listeners asked, “How do I type a standing ovation?” Thanks, Allison! It was our first of what I hope is a long series of teleclasses geared to serious or business quilters. Our first class featured a Q&A format with Gloria Hansen. Gloria’s latest book, Digital Essentials: The Quilt Maker’s Must-Have Guide to Images, Files and More, was just published in late September. The book is a wealth of valuable information and she shared lots of information on the importance of resolution, printing on fabric, working with images for slide shows, copyright protection of your images on the Web and more. I think our conversation is a great compliment to her book. We taped the conversation and it will be available next week as either an audio download or a physical CD. I’ll also have copies in Houston. And, thanks to everyone who stuck with us despite the technical difficulties. I know you’ll agree it was definitely worth it. And, thanks to Gloria for helping us kick off the series.

Update on Orphans Works Legislation

Tuesday, June 24th, 2008

To bring you up-to-date on the legislation, the Senate Judiciary Committee passed the bill (S 2913) onto the full Senate floor and it is on the Senate Legislative Calendar. The bill has passed the majority party (Democrats) with unanimous consent and the minority party (Republicans) is still considering it.
In the house, the bill (HR 889) is still in the House Judiciary Committee, which is considering amendments.
You can still get involved in this issue. It’s important for quilters to make their voices heard.
To learn more, here are some links:
Text of HR 5889: http://thomas.loc.gov/cgi-bin/bdquery/z?d110:h.r.05889:
Text of S 2913: http://thomas.loc.gov/cgi-bin/bdquery/z?d110:s.02913:
OrphanWorks.net – contains testimony on both sides of the issue before Congress.
Orphan Works Opposition Headquarters: http://www.owoh.org
Illustrators’ Partnership – http://www.illustratorspartnership.org/01_topics/article.php?searchterm=00261
Here’s a link for you to make your opinion know to your Congress
http://capwiz.com/illustratorspartnership/issues/alert/?alertid=11442621

Remember you need to act promptly and encourage fellow quilt artists to take a stand.

Copyright Protection on the Web & Orphans Work Legislation

Thursday, May 29th, 2008

Can you believe it’s almost June? May has been cool and rainy in my area, but it has resulted in beautiful, showy peonies in my yard.

I got back last week from Quilt Market in Portland. I love seeing what’s new, catching up with old friends and making new ones. The color trend I saw was orange, whether that was orange as in the fruit or a softer shade, more like orange sherbet. Of course, orange is one of my favorite colors, so maybe I was more attuned to it. I liked the larger prints in clear colors, and most fabric companies were showing black and white lines. I saw creative packaging ideas and lots of “jelly rolls.”

I’ve included some important information on pending legislation that will affect quilters. Please take time to research the Orphan Works issue and make your opinion known.

I am a big fan of personal and professional development. Next weekend my husband and I are going to an event that promises to be great on both fronts. David Neagle, known as the Million Dollar Acceleration Coach, is stopping in Baltimore as part of his “X-Country Tour.” David talks about shifting your mindset to create the life you love, effortlessly and easily. The event requires a $99 deposit, but when you register in person at the event, you get $99 back (yes, real money back). If any of you go, please look for me. You can reserve your seat here. Like David says, Success does NOT have to be hard!

Protect Your Images on the Web

In the Summer issue of The Professional Quilter, Gloria Hansen shared her experience when she discovered that some of the images from her Web site had been taken without her permission and were being offered for sale on customized merchandise. This was an obvious infringement of her copyright. After she contacted both sites involved, the items/images were removed. But she, like the rest of us, still has to be diligent, as we are all susceptible to our copyright being violated. In addition to formally registering your copyright with the U.S. Copyright office, Gloria also suggests applying a watermark to your images.

To read more of Gloria’s experience and learn about options for embedding watermarks into your Web images, you can purchase Issue 103 or can start a subscription here.

Orphan Works Legislation

Last month, bills were introduced in the U.S. House (HR 5889) and U.S. Senate (S 2913) that seek to change the 1976 U.S. Copyright Act. The intent is to provide a limitation on judicial remedies in copyright infringement cases involving orphan works. Orphan works refer to copyrighted works whose owners cannot be found after a “diligent” effort. Among other things, the bill requires artists to register every work in a private certified database, a database that currently does not exist, which presumably would be used for the “diligent” search. The current legislation, which went into effect in 1978, provides copyright protection to all work, with or without registration. This will have a significant impact on visual artists.
The full Senate and full House Judiciary Committee are expected to vote on their versions of the legislation in June. So, act now to get your opinion known to your members of Congress. I personally have written to my Congressional representatives expressing my opposition to both bills.

To learn more, here are some links:
Text of HR 5889: http://thomas.loc.gov/cgi-bin/bdquery/z?d110:h.r.05889:
Text of S 2913: http://thomas.loc.gov/cgi-bin/bdquery/z?d110:s.02913:
OrphanWorks.net – contains testimony on both sides of the issue before Congress. Particularly interesting is that from the National Textile Association.
Orphan Works Opposition Headquarters: http://www.owoh.org http://www.prweb.com/releases/2008/05/prweb911944.htm
Illustrators’ Partnership – http://www.illustratorspartnership.org/01_topics/article.php?searchterm=00261
Here’s a link for you to make your opinion known to your Congressional representatives – http://capwiz.com/illustratorspartnership/home/
Remember you need to act promptly, and encourage fellow quilt artists to take a stand.

Upcoming Show Entry Deadlines

Here are some opportunities with entry deadlines within the next 45 days:

Quilts Inc. seeks entries for its annual Quilts: A World of Beauty juried and judged competition. $101,250 in prize money will be awarded. Deadline: June 12. Details: Quilts Inc., 7660 Woodway, Ste. 550, Houston, TX 77063; www.quilts.com.

American Quilt Study Group invites submissions of 4,500 to 9,000 word papers representing original, unpublished research pertaining to the history of quilts, quiltmaking, quiltmakers, associated textiles and related topics for presentation at its 29th seminar to be held in 2009 in San Jose, Calif., and for publication in Uncoverings 2009. Deadline: July 1. Details: AQSG, PO Box 4737, Lincoln, NE 68504; 402-472-5361; www.americanquiltstudygroup.org.

More than $10,000 in cash and prizes will be awarded at the Pennsylvania National Quilt Exposition to be held September 4-7 in Harrisburg, Pa. Deadline: July 1. Details: Mancuso Show Management, PO Box 667, New Hope, PA 18939; www.quiltfest.com.

Copyright © Morna McEver Enterprises LLC, All rights reserved.
Reproduction of any kind is expressly prohibited without written authorization
Designed and hosted by GloDerWorks

 

Legal

Entries (RSS) and Comments (RSS).