New York New York Legal Blog

Twitch will remove clips found in violation of copyright law

Online streaming has changed the way that creators of all kinds monetize their content. While YouTube has long been the subject of numerous copyright violation claims, other streaming sites are starting to deal with similar problems. The streaming site Twitch, which primarily streams user's video game feeds for fans to watch, recently came under fire for alleged violations of copyright law due to music that often appears in streaming content. The site is now taking action to mute certain archived streams that may contain music for which the streamer holds no copyright.

Complete streams of content on Twitch have long been subject to muting thanks to scanning software. The software simply mutes the offending stream when the violation occurs for 30 minutes at a time. However, many fans will often take "clips" of a completed stream and save them, uploading them to the streamer's page. Those clips sometimes contain music that is subject to copyright. These clips will now be scanned the same way that completed streams are scanned.

If malpractice affected your case, you may want to sue

You were unhappy with the way you were represented by your past attorney. You lost your case, but there were multiple ways they made errors throughout that are completely their fault. They forgot to bring paperwork for the judge to review. Once, they completely missed court. They didn't talk to you before court to discuss what you should wear or what you should do when speaking with the judge.

In the end, you feel that a lack of proper representation cost you your case. You want to make sure that the attorney compensates you, because you are very unhappy with how they acted while working with you.

Counterfeit shoes at center of intellectual property litigation

The online marketplace has opened up a world of possibilities to both consumers and creators or designers. Retail giant Amazon has made it easy for customers to find goods of all kinds at competitive prices, as well as increasing the ability of retailers to attract buyers. Unfortunately, this useful system is sometimes abused by those who may want to profit off of others' ideas. For example, a recent lawsuit filed here in New York by Amazon and luxury brand Valentino alleges that a seller used the site to sell shoes that copied a design sold by Valentino. This intellectual property litigation could set a precedent for other online retailers in the future.

The two companies say that Valentino sells a certain shoe style known as the Garavani Rockstud. Their lawsuit alleges that the seller copied this design and used Amazon to market and sell the counterfeit shoes. Valentino says its shoes are iconic and that the studs on them, for which it owns a patent, appear on other designs by the brand as well. The companies allege the seller even used keywords that reference the patented design to increase sales.

Guitar lessons on YouTube may violate copyright law

One of the greatest things about the internet is the ability to bring information to people who otherwise may not be able to access it as easily. A lot of people in New York use online videos to learn new skills. Some of the video creators may receive financial compensation for teaching, either directly from video revenue, or indirectly from increased sales of other things they may produce. However, in the case of YouTube videos that teach people to play instruments like a guitar, some artists feel teachers are profiting off of their songs by using them as teaching tools. Now authorities are attempting to determine if these instructional guitar videos are a violation of copyright law.

Videos that teach people to play songs on different instruments have been popular for a long time, but recently some have questioned the legality of the videos. Some videos are released by the artists themselves and generally don't violate copyright law, since the artists are normally the ones who hold the copyright. Some artists say that their videos have been unfairly targeted, even when they are the ones holding the copyright. Others question if teachers should be allowed to use famous songs for which they clearly have no legal right to use.

Beyonce & Jay-Z accused of violating copyright law

Many New York artists dream of becoming famous, but even if that doesn't happen, they can still make valuable contributions to the artistic world. When they aren't a household name, they may feel as though they have fewer resources than someone who is well-known, especially in legal matters. However, copyright law exists to protect artists at all levels in a wide variety of mediums, and just because an artist isn't famous doesn't mean that his or her work can't be protected. This is what a choreographer is attempting to prove in her lawsuit against singer Beyonce and her husband, rapper Jay-Z.

The choreographer alleges that the famous couple misused a monologue she voiced by not compensating her properly. She claims that she was interviewed about the subject of unconditional love when she was working as a choreographer for the two artists in 2018. She says that the intent was to use her words as part of a promotional video. However, the choreographer reports that her words were included on a joint album released by the couple. 

Creating music for the web? Protect it and yourself

As a musician, something you like to do is to post your music online. Your goal is always to sell singles and records through iTunes and other platforms, but you're worried that someone will take your songs while you're not very popular and end up making money off your work.

If you want to avoid trouble with your music being stolen or used by those who didn't get permission, you need to consider taking a few legal steps. First, you'll want to get a trademark for your band or stage name. Second, you will want to copyright your music. While you have automatic protections once your music is in a tangible form, you should still consider paying for a copyright. Finally, make sure you understand Google Alerts and digital watermarks and use them to protect your music.

Name change for popular country band may violate copyright law

When New York artists think about copyright, they generally consider protecting their work, especially if they are  songwriters. However, that may not be the only creation they need to protect. Singers and bands can file for a trademark to protect a name they use to identify themselves. Even if they fail to do so, they may still have a claim under copyright law to a name they've used if someone else tries to use it without permission, depending on the circumstances. Recently, popular country group Lady Antebellum made the choice to change its name to Lady A, apparently not realizing that a blues singer has been using that name for around three decades.

The country group decided to change its name in response to criticism that "Lady Antebellum" glorifies the period of time before the Civil War when slavery was still in effect. What the group apparently did not realize is that a blues singer was already using "Lady A" as a stage name. She says no one from the group reached out to her before its announcement. 

Artist accuses Target of violating copyright law

Many New York artists assume that only musicians have a need to obtain a copyright for artistic works. However, artists of all mediums may benefit from protecting their creations, including photographers, designers and visual artists. Those in that last category in particular may not always think about how copyright law might help them, but it can. A young teen artist and his family recently filed a civil claim against retail giant Target, accusing the company of stealing one of his designs and using it in one of their kids apparel lines.

The plaintiffs say that the retail giant used the artwork of an autistic teen artist without permission. The artist has social media sites where he displays his work to his numerous followers. He and his family claim that Target used one of his designs featured in a collection of 15 works called "Circle Happiness."The freehand pattern of dots the artist created allegedly appears in Target's kids apparel line Cat & Jack, which was released in 2016.

Copyright and social media: Who owns your media?

You always share your images online. In fact, you have a great following because of all the images you post. You are an influencer, and you love it.

Unfortunately, you've found that the sites you post on have been using your images for promotion. You see others taking your images, too. Is that fair or legal? What should you do?

Copyright law around pirated Broadway shows may increase

Most people assume that when they watch an online video of a musical, they aren't hurting anyone, though that isn't entirely true. Even the biggest Broadway shows here in New York were created by artists who put a great deal of work into this form of entertainment. Watching an online, or a "bootleg," copy of a show is a violation of copyright law, as artists deserve to financially benefit from their artistic creations. Many industry leaders agree and to that end, the U.S. Copyright Office recently implored lawmakers to strengthen copyright laws to protect Broadway shows and reduce the number of Broadway bootlegs available online. 

In the past, it has been the responsibility of copyright owners to report and monitor the usage of musicals online. With the advancement of the internet, it is becoming increasingly difficult for them to do so. Many complain that even though systems exist to report online bootlegs of musicals, it is far too easy for those bootlegs to be reposted once they've been removed. Before now, online platforms such as YouTube were not liable for bootlegs posted to their sites. The U.S Copyright Office wants to change that.


Tell Us Your Story

Bold labels are required.

Contact Information

The use of the Internet or this form for communication with the firm or any individual member of the firm does not establish an attorney-client relationship. Confidential or time-sensitive information should not be sent through this form.


Privacy Policy

Office Location:
134 W. 29th Street, Suite 1006
New York, NY 10001-5304

Phone: 212-714-1200
Fax: 212-714-1264
New York Law Office Map