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Copyright package deal


#1

Hi, I am in need of advice about copyright. When I apply for one do I
have to apply for a copyrght for each peice of jewelry I design and
place for sale? That’s kind of pricey. Or is it a package deal? In
that all my jewelry designs under my business name are they copyright
protected? Thanks for any help on jewelry/copyright.

Susan,
JB443 Jewelry


#2

Copyright has been brought up before on Orchid and you should search
the archives thoroughly as there has been some good (as
well as some misso you should be a wee bit wary) in the
past. As I understand it copyright is afforded to you as soon as the
design is created, regardless of whether or not you register it.
Remember this is different than a patent where you have to apply for
a patent (and get it) to afford protection of your patent.
Registering it may help you a bit in a court of law, but then what
you have to remember is that you have to be willing to go to court
to protect your copyright. Going to court is expensive. Unless you
have deep pockets protecting your copyright is pretty near
impossible. My personal belief is that it’s a waste of time and money
to register it (unless as I said you have deep pockets and are ready
to aggressively pursue violations). But that’s just me.

Daniel R. Spirer, G.G.
Daniel R. Spirer Jewelers, LLC
www.spirerjewelers.com


#3

Hi Susan,

I own two copyrights for jewelry. I have a copyright on a necklace
that was not questioned. I have applied for two additional copyrights
that are different shapes but use the same theme. Both second
requests were denied because the theme is the same. The copyright
office said I don’t need a copyright for a bracelet that is a
shortened version of the necklace.

My second copyright is a 1.25" airplane which I make in sterling.
When I applied for the copyright, I was turned down because of the
high numbers of airplane shapes around the world. I called on the
phone and argued that my airplane had a “fat tummy” to give it a more
"friendly" appearance and there was no other airplane anywhere in the
world like it. The copyright office changed their position after the
discussion and issued the paperwork.

The process is lengthy. All four of my applications have taken three
to six months. My associates tell me the value of the copyright is
small because someone can make a very small change in design and
argue that the design has not been copied.

Good luck, Mary A.


#4
Hi, I am in need of advice about copyright. When I apply for one
do I 

Copyright for what country? Assuming USA see http://www.copyright.gov

Many other countries have similar sites specific to them.
Unfortunately the US web site and rules are somewhere in the middle
of a multi-year rethinking the basic intent of which is to
"simplify" things. (Beware, “simplification” may also mean you must
have pretty current computer hardware and software or jump through
some hoops.)

The basic answer to your “each” question is yes, file one $35
electronic or $45 paper registration for each design IF you
think it worthwhile and UNLESS they can qualify as a "collection."
And there it gets murky.

As Daniel pointed out, for jewelry items the odds are it will never
be worthwhile to register for each item. And “registration” DOES NOT
"grant" you a copyright, you already own the copyright (as long, of
course, as you did not copy, or derive your work from, someone else
and you weren’t working for hire!). As far as calling it a
"collection" and doing it under all one title, e.g., “2008
Collection” generally, yes-you-can-but-what’s-it-worth-in-court.
It’s still YOU that must, through civil actions, enforce your
presumed copyright in the courts. Will a court that sees, among some
amalgam of stuff you happened to do in 2008, that you have a rose
pendant determine that someone else’s subsequent rose looks somewhat
like yours allow you to enforce your presumed copyright against them?
Very doubtful. If your “collection” has a very specific NOVEL AND NEW
theme of which there is no prior record (sounds more like patent
criteria but for expression) and for which you have 15 such themed
items in your collection registration and that you have advertised
worldwide–not just via a website–and someone has extended or built
on that with a couple of different items then will the court let you
enforce your copyright against them? Much more likely but not a
certainty. Is it likely to be worth $10,000? $100,000? and up? FOR
YOU to get that judgement? The answer will differ for different
people so you’ll need to answer it for yourself.

Will some IP attorney be happy to file the paperwork for you for an
advance “retainer”? You betcha. Will same attorney be happy to take
your infringement case to court for you–again for a rolling advance
"retainer"–you betcha. Who will win? Who is the one that has the
(court result/cost) lose/lose (high odds), win/lose (high odds), and
win/win (low odds) possible outcome set in the game? Um, it’s you.
The attorney’s will nearly always win financially.

Business names generally should have nothing whatsoever to do with
copyright for a sole proprietor. A business can be an
author/copyright owner if a work is done “for hire” for the business
but if you are working for yourself you should almost certainly do
any copyright registration as the “author.” A business name might
have some “trademark” value but that doesn’t protect your designs at
all, it just means others can’t use your good name as their own. Be
aware, however, that the vast majority of business names in and of
themselves are not “trademarks” but can (usually) stop another
business from getting a registered trademark for that name within the
specific country the business is in.

James E. White
Inventor, Marketer, and Author of “Will It Sell? How to Determine If
Your Invention Is Profitably Marketable (Before Wasting Money on a
Patent)” Info Sites: www.willitsell.com www.inventorhome.com,
www.idearights.com www.taletyano.com www.booksforinventors.com


#5
Registering it may help you a bit in a court of law, but then what
you have to remember is that you have to be willing to go to court
to protect your copyright. Going to court is expensive. Unless you
have deep pockets protecting your copyright is pretty near
impossible. My personal belief is that it's a waste of time and
money to register it 

I agree. Your attempt to copyright can be challenged if anyone else
has ever produced an earlier piece very similar to yours. Very
frankly, a lot of jewelry design I see being copyrighted today isn’t
all that different from what was being produced during the stone and
bronze ages.

Likewise, if you have to defend that copyright against a “copyright
infringer,” she or he might simply have seen a similar design in a
museum or on a book on antiquities, and decided to try making it. And
these wrinkles are only the in’s and out’s of US copyright law.

My opinion is that in jewelry design, there’s really not that much
new under the sun. Patenting a manufacture process is a different
story.

Lorraine, having written and participated in copyrighting 3 books


#6
As I understand it copyright is afforded to you as soon as the
design is created, regardless of whether or not you register it. 

Almost. Copyright exists as soon as the design is expressed in
tangible form, e.g. a drawing. It’s not copyrighted if it’s still in
your head :slight_smile:

Registration is not necessary, but it makes a big difference in your
available remedies if someone infringes.

Al Balmer
Sun City, AZ


#7

Hi, Thank you all for the copyright advice I have received. No I
don’t have deep pockets so guess if someone wants to steal ideas from
me bad enough they can have it. Taking them to court even with
copyrights, etc is costly only just wanted to know about getting real
technical. If I so wanted to. Thank you.

Sincerely,
Susan


#8

As I understand it copyright is afforded to you as soon as the
design is created, regardless of whether or not you register it.
Coincidentally yesterday I was at a Intellectual Property workshop
presented by the UK IPO (previously the UK Patent Office) and for
those in the UK the rules are as follows:“Copyright is an Automatic
right which you do not need to formally apply or pay for. It arises
as soon as the work is “fixed” eg written down, recorded or stored
in a computer memory. You can use C in a circle followed by your name
and the date to indicate when it was created and by who. A dated copy
of the work can be deposited with a solicitor, a bank or post a
recorded delivery copy to yourself and leave it unopened. You may
sell, license or or otherwise transfer the copyright to someone else.
”(From the IPC policy document “Intellectual Property Explained”).
Further IP proof can be provided by the UK Assay Office stamping and
their record documents of individual pieces. For more on
copyright, trade marks, patents and designs in the UK see the
official UK webite www.ipo.gov.uk

Regards
Robin Key
ClavisJewellery
Aberdeen Scotland