How would you go about obtaining the copyright of work that is produced by minors? In terms of context, I am the head of a high school club that produces original animated content. The club provides members with the materials necessary to make said content. Is there a way of bringing the members into an agreement which gives their copyright protection of club related content to the club board? This ideally includes any of the intermediary content such as models and storyboards.

  • Have you asked the school's lawyer? – phoog Nov 21 '15 at 3:17
  • I have not asked the school's lawyer yet, but I am making plans to consult our director of clubs on the subject matter. – Tankobot Nov 21 '15 at 3:28

As the organizer/administrator of a world-wide music production collaboration site, I've encountered something just like this. The answer we came up with was based on a "least resistance" kind of analysis, which found that trying to obtain and administer co-copyright between a content creation-enabling venue and the content creators themselves, was an absolute nightmare, in our case particularly because jurisdiction was so broad and diversified.

The answer for us was thus: "our content-creation-enabling venue makes no claims nor assertions with respect to original copyright of content produced by our members. All copyrights and other rights in any and all working materials and finished products remain vested in the authors themselves. Content creators/authors agree, by use of the venue, that they grant the venue a non-exclusive license to use the working materials and finished products developed within the site for any purpose, including but not limited to display, education, creation of derivative works, promotion, or other uses that relate to the ongoing mandate and mission of the venue."

The key here is that you don't really want to own the copyright...you just want to protect your ability to use the content on an ongoing basis. Besides, demanding that a minor sign over copyright in creative works is a demon-in-wait, only looking for a chance to become litigation.

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