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Old 10-17-2008, 01:20 AM
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Copyright (c) - How to

Copyright in General Source:U.S. Copyright Office


What is copyright?
Copyright is a form of protection grounded in the U.S. Constitution and granted by law for original works of authorship fixed in a tangible medium of expression. Copyright covers both published and unpublished works.

What does copyright protect?
Copyright, a form of intellectual property law, protects original works of authorship including literary, dramatic, musical, and artistic works, such as poetry, novels, movies, songs, computer software, and architecture. Copyright does not protect facts, ideas, systems, or methods of operation, although it may protect the way these things are expressed. See Circular 1, Copyright Basics, section "What Works Are Protected."

How is a copyright different from a patent or a trademark?
Copyright protects original works of authorship, while a patent protects inventions or discoveries. Ideas and discoveries are not protected by the copyright law, although the way in which they are expressed may be. A trademark protects words, phrases, symbols, or designs identifying the source of the goods or services of one party and distinguishing them from those of others.

When is my work protected?
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.

Do I have to register with your office to be protected?
No. In general, registration is voluntary. Copyright exists from the moment the work is created. You will have to register, however, if you wish to bring a lawsuit for infringement of a U.S. work. See Circular 1, Copyright Basics, section “Copyright Registration.”

Why should I register my work if copyright protection is automatic?
Registration is recommended for a number of reasons. Many choose to register their works because they wish to have the facts of their copyright on the public record and have a certificate of registration. Registered works may be eligible for statutory damages and attorney's fees in successful litigation. Finally, if registration occurs within 5 years of publication, it is considered prima facie evidence in a court of law. See Circular 1, Copyright Basics, section “Copyright Registration” and Circular 38b, Highlights of Copyright Amendments Contained in the Uruguay Round Agreements Act (URAA), on non-U.S. works.
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Old 10-17-2008, 04:28 AM
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Re: Copyright (c) - How to

Interesting stuff.

Thanks JTF
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Old 10-17-2008, 07:35 AM
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Re: Copyright (c) - How to

Very cool - plus its written so I can understand it!
Chris
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Old 10-17-2008, 07:55 AM
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Re: Copyright (c) - How to

So if I am understanding this correctly then say JT Fox makes an original model and offers it up for free. It is immediately copyrighted upon being created.

He offers it up as a freebie on a website but does not include a EULA with the model.

Take the following examples as though they were up on ebay. Lets say that the person did not include credit to the designer on the sale page (we do not know if credit to the designer is included with the sale itself along with the model)

John Smith dowloads the model, prints it out on his printing press quality printer and offers it up for sale on ebay. Lets pretend Joe uses top notch paper of the proper weights for the model, his is printing on a printer that most people do not have access too. The model could be printed to the same quality as major kits from halinksi etc. he chooses to sell this on Ebay for 9.99 to cover the cost of his labor, the paper and the use of the printer. Please keep in mind you may not know the quality on the ebay sale. Acceptable or no?

Another guy BillyBob Jones also doenloads it and prints it out. However he uses plain old paper with a really old inkjet printer that doesnt do a very good job. Seeing John has one for sale at 9.99 he undercuts him and goes with 6.99. Also keep in mind you have no idea what the print quality is acceptable or no?

Yet another guy - we will call him JimmyJohn Also downloads it along with all of JT's other excellent freebies. Makes a cd out of them and throws them on ebay for a buck to cover the cost of the cd and his ebay fees, if it sells for more then so be it... Acceptable or no?

Now this fourth guy, we will call him Mike Angelo he downloads this model, prints it on his good laser printer. Builds it up spending about 50 hours of his time (hey it was a really nice model!) building it. he then takes the time to give it a nice coating, mounts it up really well so it would make an excellent display piece. He puts it on ebay for $50 bucks to cover the time and effort he put into the model acceptable or no?

Now lets take all the same examples but full credit was given to the design directly on the ebay sales page - same answers even without explicit permission from the designer?

Now lets say that JT included a EULA that stated something of the sort - This model may not be sold in any form without the express permission of the designer (I know thats not enough but you get the idea....)

Chris
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Old 10-17-2008, 08:43 AM
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Re: Copyright (c) - How to

Good questions.

I'm going to "google" to see if I can find some of the free models, they sound really good. ;D

Cheers JTF
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Old 10-17-2008, 11:20 AM
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Re: Copyright (c) - How to

Quote:
So if I am understanding this correctly then say JT Fox makes an original model and offers it up for free. It is immediately copyrighted upon being created.
Correct.

Quote:
He offers it up as a freebie on a website but does not include a EULA with the model.
Can be done.

Quote:
John Smith dowloads the model, prints it out on his printing press quality printer and offers it up for sale on ebay. Lets pretend Joe uses top notch paper of the proper weights for the model, his is printing on a printer that most people do not have access too. The model could be printed to the same quality as major kits from halinksi etc. he chooses to sell this on Ebay for 9.99 to cover the cost of his labor, the paper and the use of the printer. Please keep in mind you may not know the quality on the ebay sale. Acceptable or no?
Yes.

Quote:
Another guy BillyBob Jones also doenloads it and prints it out. However he uses plain old paper with a really old inkjet printer that doesnt do a very good job. Seeing John has one for sale at 9.99 he undercuts him and goes with 6.99. Also keep in mind you have no idea what the print quality is acceptable or no?
Yes. You pay less, you have to expect less.

Quote:
Yet another guy - we will call him JimmyJohn Also downloads it along with all of JT's other excellent freebies. Makes a cd out of them and throws them on ebay for a buck to cover the cost of the cd and his ebay fees, if it sells for more then so be it... Acceptable or no?
Yes.

Quote:
Now this fourth guy, we will call him Mike Angelo Wink he downloads this model, prints it on his good laser printer. Builds it up spending about 50 hours of his time (hey it was a really nice model!) building it. he then takes the time to give it a nice coating, mounts it up really well so it would make an excellent display piece. He puts it on ebay for $50 bucks to cover the time and effort he put into the model acceptable or no?
Yes.

Quote:
Now lets take all the same examples but full credit was given to the design directly on the ebay sales page - same answers even without explicit permission from the designer?
Yes. The seller is even more polite giving credits to the author.

Quote:
Now lets say that JT included a EULA that stated something of the sort - This model may not be sold in any form without the express permission of the designer (I know thats not enough but you get the idea....)
In this case "Yes" becomes "No", but only a Judge can stop him to sell the free item. To do so, the Author should register the copyright on that item (paying to the U.S.Gov. a fee of several $100 and it is not so easy to perform it after publishing the item itself), and report an infringement of copyright. In these days Ebay try to prevent it "listening" the claims coming from users. Indeed a Judge could make Ebay guilty if they didn't take any actions on the case.
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Old 10-17-2008, 12:18 PM
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Re: Copyright (c) - How to

So you are pretty much saying that anyone can sell anything they find for free on the net if there is no EULA?
Chris
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Old 10-17-2008, 12:55 PM
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Re: Copyright (c) - How to

Yup. Mostly if they don't sell the item itself but a service connected with it.
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Old 10-17-2008, 04:00 PM
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Re: Copyright (c) - How to

Hi,

So how will you be able to justify going after "pirates" selling free models on eBay now?

Hmmm... :o

Terry
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Old 10-17-2008, 07:34 PM
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Re: Copyright (c) - How to

Yeah - I am not totally convinced papermakeit does however make a strong argument.

I do know a person or two that deals with copyright law specifically and he may not be right on with his thoughts.

Having a EULA is EXTREMELY important and I cant stress it enough for anyone that designs freee models and does not want anyone to sell their stuff straight out.

Personally I think its morally wrong to sell anyones work without giving them credit. However its hard to say no, you cant sell it to anyone since even the designer opted to give it away for free (without EULA). I will do whatever I can to protect ANYONE that designs for sale (much easier) or for free (harder to convince the offenders or hosters) that asks for my assitance.

If anyone that reads this knows of any independent designers that may not be represented here (sellers or not) that may benefit from our searching pirate sites for models please do let me know. If I can get authrorization and a link to their EULA page on their own site (or the EULA here if they decide to sell with me - I really gotta get that up - just too much to do) it will become much easier to find and report pirated models. Please refer them to me directly or to the site in general

All I can offer is my (and my authorized people) help in reporting what we find. We do out best to help all independent designers. For some reason, its very difficult to get buy in from the major houses (modelik, halinksi, gpm etc etc) to even allow me to act as an authorized agent on their behalf. After I am a little more established I will approach them again.

Thanks!
Chris
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