This past week, the most interesting copyright-related legal blogs centered on art, artists' moral rights, and the rights of those whose trademarks were depicted in commercial art.
Starting at the bare bottom, legal bloggers Annick Mottet Haugaard, Olivia Santantonio, and Ruben Van Breugel discuss --with illustrations-- the legal objections brought by a maker of one of the world's finest Champagnes to an artist's repeated commercial use of their trademark in his works.
Lexology Link (which at the time of this writing is displaying the pointillismish bottom)
Original Link (which unfortunately has broken links for the illustrations)
The bare-bottom-with-bubbly case has not been settled, but for any author who is considering using someone else's trademark in her cover art... beware.
Beware, also, what you re-tweet. Defamation laws around the world are different, as J. Alexander Lawrence blogging for Morrison & Foerster LLP's Socially Aware blog explains.
Even if you have the right to express yourself in 120 characters or more, someone else may have the right to sue you.
Talking of being sued, Susan Okin Goldsmith writing for McCarter & English LLP has an inconvenient warning for owners of websites or blogs that allow third parties to comment or upload material (presumably or links) that might infringe on the copyrights of others.
Register your agent with the Copyright Office, or risk liability for whatever your visitors may post. The article is well worth reading, and gives detailed instructions on how to register and what it will cost.
Finally, and quite startlingly, Aysha Alawi-Azam blogging for Clyde & Co LLP reveals that an owner of a work of art may have difficulties if they change even the frame, let alone if they heavily restore the art, and the still-living artist objects.
Sometimes we buy art at an estate sale, for instance, and it never dawns on us that it might be unwise to switch out one frame for another. It's worth reading the original... there are some glorious illustrations.
All the best,
SPACE SNARK™ http://www.spacesnark.com/ http://www.rowenacherry.com
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