Intellectual Property Archives

Disney says 'No worries' about intellectual property claims

Intellectual property law is complex to begin with, but certain claims often create a gray area that requires legal action to clarify. Intellectual property law, including trademarks and patents, allows one person or group to take legal action if someone else attempts to use and profit from a protected work. Trademark protection includes items such as a symbol, design or word that identifies the product. However, it may not always be clear how far that protection may go.

Verdict blurs lines of intellectual property law

It has been a long ordeal for music artists Robin Thicke and Pharrell Williams. Since 2013, the two have faced accusations that their song "Blurred Lines" infringed on the intellectual property of the late Marvin Gaye because of its similarities to "Got to Give It Up," a 1977 R&B hit. Thicke and Pharrell initially attempted to preempt any copyright claims by filing a lawsuit seeking a court's ruling that the song did not infringe on the Gaye's copyrights. A final ruling came down this week.

Notifying those who violate intellectual property rights

When an artist, writer, entrepreneur or other creative person discovers someone else using copyrighted material without permission, it can be shocking and upsetting. After all, not only may the other person profit unjustly from the copyright owner's intellectual property, but he or she may damage the reputation of the creator if the material is misused. The first question a New York copyright owner may have is, "How do I make them stop?"  

Publicly streaming music may violate intellectual property law

Most customers of New York restaurants, cafes and shops have come to expect a certain atmosphere from their favorite haunts. A large part of that ambience includes the music piped through speakers. In most cases, that music comes via a streaming service, such as Pandora or Spotify. However, what customers may not realize is that many business owners may be committing intellectual property theft by misusing their music streaming subscriptions.

Whose intellectual property are recordings of Gilda Radner?

Those who remember the earliest days of "Saturday Night Live" may have fond memories of comedienne Gilda Radner, who died in 1989 of ovarian cancer. Many likely looked forward to the documentary, "Love, Gilda," which was released last month. For one New York journalist, however, the release of the intimate portrait of the beloved star was a shock, especially when the writer realized the movie used her intellectual property without her knowledge.

School acknowledges intellectual property violation

School mascots are meant to inspire and rally students to strive for success. Those mascots are often symbols of desirable traits, such as strength, perseverance or indomitability. Sometimes, however, a New York school chooses its mascot or logo because it is familiar to students. For one school in another state, a familiar mascot was also a violation of intellectual property rights.

Aretha Franklin wanted respect for her intellectual property

The recent passing of Aretha Franklin was sad news to fans in New York and across the world. While her first hit song "Respect" became an anthem of empowerment for women and all those seeking fair treatment, it ironically represents the inequity many pre-1972 performers experienced under intellectual property laws. While songwriters and publishers received royalties for songs each time a radio station played them, the recording artists got nothing.

Theater group accused of intellectual property violations

Music Theater International is a licensing agency providing official scripts, librettos and musical scores for local theater groups in New York and across the world. Because of MTI's services, communities that would otherwise have little opportunity to see popular Broadway shows can have a taste of the experience. Perhaps more importantly, those who enjoy performing can participate in quality shows with wide appeal. MTI protects the intellectual property of the authors and composers of these shows, and this promotes creativity and artistic expression.

Disney faces new claims of intellectual property theft

College is a time to work out new ideas and make plans for the future. Since the atmosphere is often alive with creativity and the campus full of like-minded people, university life may spark many original ideas and give rise to inspirational projects. Far from dismissing those projects as the concepts of an immature mind, many graduates from New York institutions and those around the world find that the finished work is intellectual property worth protecting.

Intellectual property lawsuit claims Spotify owes royalties for s

For a New York songwriter, music royalties are an important method of sustaining income. In the past, royalties were largely affected by record sales, but modern musicians earn money through licensing agreements with streaming services, such as Pandora, Amazon Prime and Spotify. These agreements give the services the right to offer certain songs to listeners for a fee. While the U.S. Congress considers legislation to broaden the intellectual property protection in the music industry, at least one music streaming service is settling a class action lawsuit.

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