FAQ2019-08-12T08:47:14+00:00

Do you file copyright applications in other countries?2019-11-12T15:17:31+00:00

Yes, we do. Especially we recommend filing for copyright in China. Contact us for further details about filing copyright applications in other countries.

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How do I prevent others copying my photographs?2019-11-12T15:19:19+00:00

Ensure that you have registered copyright for your photographs.

Make sure you physically affix your trademark to your products and/or packaging.

Make sure you are Brand Registered.

Consider putting watermark on your images.

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What to do if my Amazon photographs have been copied by another seller?2019-11-12T16:36:54+00:00

Report offending images via drop down menu “copyright” and choose images.

If you own copyright and a trademark, Amazon will remove offending images and issue a listing violation warning once you provide evidence of IP ownership.

You can also send the other seller an invoice for unauthorized use of your image (don’t count on the invoice been paid though).

Go on the offensive! Report them to Amazon for copyright theft. Usually Amazon will not even ask for proof of copyright ownership, as Amazon will automatically side with you to avoid getting drawn into the argument and tell the other seller it’s up to them to sort it out with you and (effectively) prove that they are not infringing.

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When is my copyrighted work protected?2019-11-12T16:46:25+00:00

Your work is under copyright protection the moment it is created and fixed in a tangible form that it is perceptible either directly or with the aid of a machine or device.

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Does “poor man’s” copyright exist?2019-11-12T17:14:58+00:00

The practice of sending a copy of your own work to yourself is sometimes called a “poor man’s copyright.” There is no provision in the copyright law regarding any such type of protection, and it is not a substitute for registration.

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Are ideas protected by copyright?2019-11-12T17:20:07+00:00

Ideas, facts, and concepts are not protectable by copyright. However, the expression of those ideas, facts, and concepts are protectable. For example, anyone may “use” the ideas, facts, and procedures in a news article to write their own article that uses their own expression, but, with some exceptions, no one is allowed take the expression used by the author of the article to describe or explain those ideas, facts, and procedures. This is what is known as the idea/expression dichotomy. This distinction between what is and what is not protected by copyright encourages people to build freely upon the ideas and information conveyed by someone else while at the same time encouraging the creation and dissemination of the copyrighted work in the first place.

Although it is rare, there are times when the idea and the expression of the idea are so intertwined with one another that there is only one way or very few ways to express the idea. When the idea and expression of the idea merge like this the expression of the idea is not copyrightable. This is what is commonly referred to as the merger doctrine.

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What cannot be protected by copyright?2019-11-12T17:52:13+00:00

Copyright protection is not available for:

  • Procedures, processes, and methods of operation;
  • Systems;
  • Ideas, facts, and concepts;
  • Principles and discoveries;
  • Titles, slogans, and other short phrases;
  • Lists of ingredients;
  • Creations that are not fixed in a tangible form, like an improvisational comedy sketch;
  • Information that is comprised completely of common property and no original authorship, like standard calendars, height, and weight charts, tape measures, and rulers;
  • Utilitarian elements of industrial designs (although the expressive elements of the design may be protected, such as a decorative lamp base);
  • Familiar symbols or designs, like a “Stop” sign;
  • Simple geometrical shapes; and
  • Mere variations of typographic ornamentation, lettering or coloring

In some cases, these things might be protectable under patent, trademark or trade secret law. For example, a slogan may be eligible for trademark protection and a process may be the patentable subject matter. Also, although an idea, fact or concept itself is not protectable, the expression of an idea, facts or concept, such as in description, explanation, or illustration may be protectable or as a database of facts.

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What can be protected by copyright?2019-11-11T10:36:32+00:00

Copyright protects original works of authorship. Just about anything that can be fixed in a tangible form and constitutes a creator’s expression is protectable under the Copyright Act. A non-exhaustive list of copyrightable subject matter includes:

  • Literary Works.This category of works includes things like novels, poems, short stories, periodicals, essays, dictionaries, manuscripts, periodicals and articles. It also includes software, such as smartphone apps, video games and business software.
  • Musical Works and Any Accompanying Words.This category of works includes any work that consists of musical notes and lyrics in a musical composition.
  • Motion Pictures and Other Audiovisual Works.This category includes, online videos, motion pictures and television shows, video games, and slideshows.
  • Sound Recordings.A sound recording is a work that results from the fixation of sounds without a visual component, whether musical or spoken. This category of works includes music on CDs, podcasts, and recorded speeches.
  • Pictorial, Graphic, and Sculptural Works.This category of works includes two and three dimensional works of fine, graphic and applied art, photographs, prints and art reproductions, maps, and diagrams.
  • Dramatic Works and Any Accompanying Music.A dramatic work is one in which a series of events is presented to an audience by characters through dialogue and action. This category of works includes plays, operas and musicals.
  • Pantomimes and Choreographic Works.This category of works includes dances.
  • Architectural Works.This category includes not only the architectural plans but also the building and any associated drawings.

In addition to this list of works the copyright law also protects certain compilations and derivative works.

  • A compilation is a work formed by the collection and assembling of preexisting materials or of data that are selected, coordinated, or arranged in such a way that the resulting work as a whole meets the requirements for copyright protection. Compilations includes collective works, like periodicals, anthologies, encyclopedias and other works in which a number of independently copyrightable works are assembled, as well as, other works, like directories and databases, that incorporate and assemble pre-existing materials, data or other information that is not independently copyrightable.
  • Derivative Works.A derivative work is a work that is based on one or more preexisting works that has been transformed or modified in some way. For example, an abridged, annotated or revised edition of a book, translations and musical arrangements.

Copyright protection in a compilation or derivative work extends only to the new material contributed by the author of the work and does not extend to either preexisting material included in the compilation or derivative work or any portion of a work that unlawfully incorporates copyrighted preexisting material.

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