5 Fresh Technologies Shaping the Future of Copyright

Photo Credit: 3Dfactories - EASY3DMAKER - 3D printer v09 by Creative Tools used under CC BY-NC-ND 2.0.
Photo Credit: 3Dfactories – EASY3DMAKER – 3D printer v09 by Creative Tools used under CC BY-NC-ND 2.0.

It cannot be denied.

Modern America has an acute and widespread fascination with newness.

New things have a charm that we simply cannot resist and bring with them a unique sense of satisfaction and prestige, however fleeting, in plentiful supply.

Fueling this phenomena is the consistent and prolific advancement of technology.

In almost every area of human life and capacity, 21st-century technology has given us a life of conveniences and abundance our predecessors only dreamed of – and it shows no signs of slowing up.

Then, there is the law, whose developmental pace is notoriously not so similar.

As technology hurtles forward at warp speed, our laws hustle to maintain many precarious and traditional balances.

Particularly, copyright law, and it’s unique cost/ benefits rationale, is routinely challenged as technological advancements continue to revolutionize an ever-evolving cultural climate thriving on newness.

1. Digital Property and Mobile Technology

The most familiar notch on the newness timeline is increasingly prevalent – and increasingly mobile – digital property.

This category of new technology can be defined as electronically stored copyrightable works – words, photos, music and performance art – digitized and frequently transferred, copied and shared across the airwaves.

When copyright law steps in to Continue reading 5 Fresh Technologies Shaping the Future of Copyright

What the Winklevoss Twins Can Teach You About Copyright & Intellectual Property So You Don’t Get Zuckerberged

Photo Credit: Cameron Winklevoss at the 2008 Beijing Olympics by Johnnyroee used under CC BY 3.0
Photo Credit: Cameron Winklevoss at the 2008 Beijing Olympics by Johnnyroee used under CC BY 3.0

Do you remember the movie “Social Network” that came out in 2010?

The movie’s main story line revolved around a toxic business relationship and intellectual property dispute that arose between Tyler and Cameron Winklevoss, known to the world as the Winklevoss twins, and the future owner of Facebook, Mark Zuckerberg.

The Winklevoss twins were students at Harvard and had hired Zuckerberg as an employee to work on the software of their social network business model and brand “UConnect.”

The twins would later claim that Zuckerberg stole their business model “idea” when he formed his own social network site “Facebook.” The twins sued Zuckerberg in federal court netting them millions of dollars in damages.

Ideas Are Not Copyrightable

Everybody knows that ideas are not copyrightable.

Does that mean then that whenever you have a brilliant and innovative idea for a business, a novel, a car design or have any other flash of true genius in the form of a concept or design that there is no law in place that can work to protect the intellectual property rights in your “idea”?

Is there no way to stop your “idea” from being stolen out from under you by trusted employees or other double dealing interests in situations similar to that of Mark Zuckerberg and those innocent and trusting Winklevoss twins?

The answer is Continue reading What the Winklevoss Twins Can Teach You About Copyright & Intellectual Property So You Don’t Get Zuckerberged

Your Copyrights on Facebook and Twitter: What May Surprise You

Today’s ever-evolving platforms allowing the dissemination of information raise questions regarding copyright issues.

Inevitably, these new copyright issues do not fit comfortably into the existing legal framework, and the popularity of social networking sites including Facebook and Twitter introduce new copyright conundrums on a regular basis.

As users of social networking sites, most of us are aware that copyright exists. We may never have given it a second thought, especially when it comes to our own tweets or postings.

Some of us may have been aware enough to check out the terms and conditions in relation to our material posted on these sites, and have been secure in the knowledge that both Facebook and Twitter say we retain the rights to any content we submit on their sites.

Facebook’s Statement of Rights and Responsibilities (SORR) says ‘You own all of the content and information you post on Facebook’ and Twitter’s Terms of Service (TOS) states ‘You retain your rights to any Content you submit, post or display on or through the Services’.

You Own Copyright to Your Content, But . . .

However, delve a little deeper and two things may be surprise you.

Firstly, you may own your own content, but Continue reading Your Copyrights on Facebook and Twitter: What May Surprise You