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who knows copyright law?


Pete M
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and I use that term loosely as my drawings aren't actually copyrighted as such.  as I understand it, I don't actually need to copyright a drawing I've done to have legal protections. 

anywho, yesterday I found another person that copy/pasted the logo from the internet and was hocking his cheesy decals.   After I called him on it, I got the same "all I have to do is alter it a bit and it's no longer yours" argument.  I have no intention of actually suing over it, but am curious what legal recourse I would theoretically have.  There's got to be something that protects people's efforts against the copy/paste generation.  :dunno:

 

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18 minutes ago, davidh190 said:

A good cease and desist letter should scare him into taking it down. If you took this to court it’s a slam dunk case for any attorney (good).


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This^^

Any attorney can get one written up real quick and it shouldn't cost much.  You may even be able to have it done in a generic way so you can reuse it for any future problems. 

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this time the "comanche club" was removed and he used the truck.  he also admitted to copy/pasting another person's art too and put to two together for his own decal.  the facebook thread was deleted so unfortunately I can't share. should have screen shot it.  but he did send me a FB message I haven't yet responded to. 

 

I'm a fairly happy-go-lucky kind of guy, but it really irks me when they argue that it's now theirs because, well, they found it.  :fistshake1:  draw your own freaking images!  how hard is that?  I'm not claiming that I designed an MJ, but when you have clearly just clicked a couple times and used what I spent days creating, then screw you. 

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Copyright law has changed since I last thought I knew a little about it. As an architect, it concerns me professionally. When I entered the profession years ago, to copyright our designs we had to put a copyright notice on the drawings we issued. As I understand it, that's no longer necessary. The copyright laws were revised in 1976.

 

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Copyright_law_of_the_United_States

 

In 2017, the U.S. Supreme Court granted certiorari in the case Star Athletica, L. L. C. v. Varsity Brands, Inc. to determine when a "pictorial, graphic, or sculptural feature" incorporated into a useful article is eligible for copyright protection,[14] holding that such features are eligible for copyright protection "only if the feature (1) can be perceived as a two- or three-dimensional work of art separate from the useful article and (2) would qualify as a protectable pictorial, graphic, or sculptural work—either on its own or fixed in some other tangible medium of expression—if it were imagined separately from the useful article into which it is incorporated."[15]Star Athletica began as a suit by Varsity Brands against Star Athletica for infringing the copyright of five cheerleader uniform designs.[16] Applying its new test to the cheerleader uniform designs, the court said:



 

First, one can identify the decorations as features having pictorial, graphic, or sculptural qualities. Second, if the arrangement of colors, shapes, stripes, and chevrons on the surface of the cheerleading uniforms were separated from the uniform and applied in another medium—for example, on a painter’s canvas—they would qualify as "two-dimensional . . . works of . . . art". And imaginatively removing the surface decorations from the uniforms and applying them in another medium would not replicate the uniform itself. Indeed, respondents have applied the designs in this case to other media of expression—different types of clothing—without replicating the uniform. The decorations are therefore separable from the uniforms and eligible for copyright protection.[17]


 

This produces a relatively low threshold for pictorial, graphic, or sculptural features on useful articles to be eligible for copyright protection, which one commentator clearly highlighted: the Star Athletica decision "really has ensured that all but the subtlest graphic designs will be able to gain copyright protection...once we determine that the designs 'hav[e] … graphic … qualities … [and could be] applied … on a painter’s canvas,' the test for copyrightability is met."

 

So your logo can be copyrighted (and, in fact, is copyrighted to you as long as you haven't transferred it or released it into the public domain). The copyright applies to the original and to "derivative works," which is anything that's an obvious rip-off with minor changes.

 

Copyright is automatically granted to the author of an original work (that otherwise meets the basic copyright requirements, discussed above). Registration is not necessary. However, registration amplifies a copyright holder's rights in a number of ways. Registration is required before a lawsuit can be filed, and registration creates the possibility for enhanced "statutory" damages.



 

A copyright can be registered online at the US Copyright Office's website. The Copyright Office reviews applications for obvious errors or lack of copyrightable subject matter, and then issues a certificate of registration. The Copyright Office does not compare the authors new work against a collection of existing works or otherwise check for infringement.

 

I would suggest that you look into the process of registering your copyright. If the fee is an impediment -- let us know and I'm sure enough people will chip in a day's lunch money to cover it. I hate copyright thieves.

 

This is why any time I post my information about the mixing and matching of front axles, hubs, aand brakes I mention specifically that I am not releasing it into the public domain or granting permission to copy it and spread it around. I can't actually prevent anyone from passing it along, but by my stating that I don't grant permission I have protected my intellectual property claim. You have done that by notifying this clown, but if you can find a snail mail address for him and serve him with a written notice by registered or certified mail, your protection will be greater.

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7 hours ago, Pete M said:

this time the "comanche club" was removed and he used the truck.  he also admitted to copy/pasting another person's art too and put to two together for his own decal.  the facebook thread was deleted so unfortunately I can't share. should have screen shot it.  but he did send me a FB message I haven't yet responded to. 

 

 

Is he using book of faces to promote "his" decals? I would file a formal complaint with Facebook. Explain who you are, give them a link to the forum, and include his FB message for confirmation. Get the SOB suspended or banned.

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