Intellectual Property

Copyright and Trademark

Copyrights and trademark are both types of intellectual property (IP). Copyright is a legal term describing rights given to creators for their literary and artistic works. A trademark provides protection to the owner of the mark by ensuring the exclusive right to use it to identify goods or services, or to authorize another to use it in return for payment.

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Professor James Grimmelmann, New York Law School, examines a current copyright infringement case between the silent magician Teller and a Dutch magician. Professor Grimmelmann examines the complaint in the case as well as the registration of the specific magic trick in order to determine what the “work” protected by copyright is, and whether Teller’s registration can support anything beyond the four corners of the stage directions.
Professor James Grimmelmann, New York Law School, examines Aereo’s plans to capture over-the-air TV signals and stream them to customers in the New York area against the U.S. copyright laws.
TAP scholar Peter DiCola will be moderating a panel on “Copyright and the Future of Entertainment” at next week’s symposium on intellectual property and the influence of technology.
Much to my happiness, the internets are in a frenzy about the “Stop Online Piracy Act” (aka SOPA).
Piracy is a top concern for U.S. lawmakers. Two bills now pending in Congress, the PROTECT IP Act of 2011 and the Stop Online Piracy Act, are expected to generate a lot of debate as they come up for votes this legislative session. Professor Mark Lemley and co-authors David S. Levine, and David G. Post examine these proposed bills in their article, “Don’t Break the Internet.”
Professor Jonathan Zittrain of Harvard Law School debates the Stop Online Piracy Act on “The Colbert Report.”
Jason Mazzone, the Gerald Baylin Professor of Law at Brooklyn Law School, has just published Copyfraud and Other Abuses of Intellectual Property Law (Stanford University Press, 2011). Wikipedia founder Jimmy Wales calls the book “a must read for anyone who cares about the future of creativity” and says that it will “transform debates about balancing private property with public access to information in the digital age.”
The IP Colloquium, hosted by UCLA Law professor Doug Lichtman, presents a fireside chat with two senior executives from Verizon: Executive Vice President Tom Tauke and Assistant Vice President Link Howeing. Among other topics, they talk about the role ISPs should play when it comes to discouraging copyright infringement online.
The Google Books settlement, a book collector whose audacious plan to remake copyright law was ultimately for naught, died today. It was caught in the blast from a recent court decision, and received fatal injuries. Professor James Grimmelmann, New York Law School, explores the results of this latest and apparently final leg of the Google Book Settlement journey.
Professor James Grimmelmann provides a summary of the recent status conference on the Google Books case. Two things occurred: Judge Chin started threatening to put schedule pressure on the parties, and they let slip that they’re working on an “opt-in settlement.”
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Fact Sheets

Piracy and IP Enforcement

In the context of technology, “piracy” is a colloquial term for the illegal copying of copyrighted works. The related problem of counterfeiting is the illegal reproduction of patented or trademarked products.


In Michigan, A Highway Sign Is at Center of an Unusual Trademark Dispute

"But there's at least a question, as far as I can tell, as to whether a road sign of this type would be deemed an official insignia of a state. I think that might be a little bit hard for the state to prove here." — Mark Janis, Professor of Law, Indiana University

Mark Janis
National Public Radio’s “Morning Edition
November 1, 2016

Featured Article

Questioning Copyright in Standards

This article asks if the systematic collection of data can be protected by copyright.

By: Pamela Samuelson