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Questions tagged [intellectual-property]

For questions concerning the ownership of ideas, designs and creative work. Specific IP tags include copyright, trademark, and patents.

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Music Law - what type of liscence is required?

I am a playwright designing a show for the cruise line industry and am curious about the rights and licenses that apply to using popular music in my show. I intend to play the popular music, (as the ...
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1answer
28 views

Should I put a my businesses copyright on my client's website?

I wasn't sure where to ask this, so apologies in advanced if this isn't fitting for this stackexchange. I co-own a web design agency, we're finishing up our first three jobs this week for some ...
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39 views

Can Snapchat sue me if I use name “Snap” in my commercial project?

I plan to name my commercial web project as ____Snap. My website will be unrelated to what SnapChat is offering and in a different industry, but idea of short living content is the same.
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1answer
51 views

Is making a home music server legal?

I am planning to make a Local-Area-Network personal music server program. The idea is that the program lets you host your music so you can stream it from any of your devices on your local network (...
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1answer
57 views

Who, at a company, is allowed to release code under (open source) license?

Suppose I wanted to release some code I wrote for my employer as an open source project, who at the company would be allowed to do that in the eyes of the law? I ask about open source, but I suppose ...
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168 views
+50

Is it legal to unlock artificially limited hardware yourself?

Some companies sell hardware that is limited by some means, so that they can charge for upgrades. For example some Tesla cars have batteries with some capacity unavailable to the user unless they pay ...
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20 views

Using output of a CC BY-NC AI algorithm in a commercial product?

If I use nvidia's stylegan, which is CC BY-NC, to generate images that then will be part of a dataset used as input of my own ML algorithm, do I infringe the stylegan license if I make a remuneration ...
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1answer
30 views

Is it work-for-hire if the hirer doesn't own copyright on collective work?

Per https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Work_for_hire#Law_in_the_United_States, work done by an an independent contractor may qualify under work-for-hire if it's a contribution to a collective work. But ...
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27 views

Do you have to surrender “ideas” in intellectual property transfer?

I'm looking at an MSA for software services that reads, in part, emphasis mine: Contractor agrees that all of the work product produced under this Agreement, including without limitation all notes, ...
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1answer
31 views

Legal Strategy for Protecting IP

I have done substantial work on some software that I plan to continue to develop and improve during the course of my next employment. The contract has something to the effect of All code created ...
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1answer
3k views

Do people have the right to comment or live blog professional sports in the United States?

Do private persons have the freedom to live blog or comment on games on progress in professional sports? For example, can a web caster watch the game on TV and then give his running commentary and ...
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Consulting: Are financial models and presentations considered IP?

I am putting together consulting agreements for my advisory business, which focuses on strategic advisory to executives and investors. As part of my work for clients, I will be putting together a lot ...
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1answer
124 views

Email commitment possibly broken by big company

So here is the story: I email company A asking for a specific service they provide. They tell me to describe my idea and I ask explicitly for confidentiality (but not NDA just expressed) which was ...
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18 views

Invention assignment in case of live/work arrangement in California

Section 2870 of the California Labor Code protects an employee's ownership in personal inventions so long as these inventions are ... developed entirely on his or her own time without using the ...
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1answer
46 views

Video Copyright: Can I mix my videos to one video and copyright one time?

Suppose I have a large number of videos and I want to register the copyright on them so others can't copy them and use them. Instead of paying for each registration alone, is it okay to mix all of ...
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1answer
42 views

How do I legally quote one or two lines of lyrics in a novel I plan to publish?

I've been thinking about publishing my novel on SmashWords and CreateSpace after having written it five years ago. However, in a paragraph, I quoted two lines of Lyrics, but didn't give the name of ...
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1answer
22 views

Protecting IP of video subject

I have several projects and inventions the development of which I would like to chronicle on YouTube, however I'm also aware of the risks in doing so as anyone viewing the videos would be able to ...
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2answers
34 views

License to grant intellectual property of paper created in a company [closed]

Is there a license -Open Source license, maybe- which grants the intellectual property on a paper (how-to guide, for example) I have created in a company, even if I work for it? I would like to make ...
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1answer
75 views

Can I sample my synthesizer's sounds to use in my own commercial game releases?

I bought a synthesizer (Yamaha CS1x) back in 1997. Recently I've been developing games for Android and iPhone and need a sound effects source. The CS1x might be useful. Is it legal for me to sample ...
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2answers
65 views

Intellectual property and storage medium

A State owned hard drive contains intellectual property belonging to an individual. Can the State remove that hard drive from the premises of the individual without his consent? EDIT: The property ...
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2answers
48 views

Can I use a branded product name and/or product pictures in their retail packaging in my paid cooking video?

I'm making cooking videos of my own recipes for selling on line. In order to help viewers replicate my recipes exactly, I'd like to: Refer to brand-name ingredients in my video, e.g., "Great Value ...
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1answer
42 views

Does copyright law extend to ideas expressed in movies?

My main question is in regards to ideas expressed in movies, but which are not fully explored. For example, if a science fiction movie presents a race which has a particular habit or nuance which is ...
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12 views

Can the name of a fictional place be used on merchandise?

If I were to sell apparel with say the name of a fictional organization would I need special permissions or licensing? Ex: Yakatomi Towers was from the movie 'Die Hard'. Could I sell apparel with '...
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“Space Data Corp. v. X” on the NDA protection of trade secrets

I have a few questions about the meaning of some stuff in this case: Space Data Corp. v. X. (1) Google first contends that Space Data's claims for misappropriation of trade secrets pursuant to both ...
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2answers
417 views

Is this Intellectual Property clause over-reaching?

Here's an extract from my (employee) contract All rights to any material and results, and all intellectual property rights related thereto, made, written, designed or produced by Nathan Cooper ...
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1answer
66 views

Can an employer steal intellectual property?

Say someone wrote some software PRIOR to employment at the company where they currently work. They presented it to a CEO and three other high level employees of the company. They expressed, what the ...
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1answer
43 views

Kellogg v National Biscuit Co

In Kellogg v National Biscuit Co it was ruled that once a utility patent expires the patentee can never make a trademark-like claim to the exclusive use of the source-identifying function of the shape ...
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44 views

The Lanham Act: how similar is too similar in trademarks

The Lanham Act prohibits the unauthorized use of a reproduction, copy, or imitation of a registered trademark in a way that "is likely to cause confusion" with the registered mark. One factor taken ...
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2answers
42 views

Anticipating “novelty” in patent law

In its opinion the Court discusses earlier wire fence construction that, though somewhat similar to Glidden’s, did not “anticipate” the Glidden invention. “Anticipate” is a term of art in patent law. ...
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2answers
34 views

How non-public could a disclosure/publication be, and still count as such for patent “prior art” and copyright purposes? [closed]

The essence of both patent and copyright is that a creator/inventor gets legal protection and exclusivity within broad limits, in exchange for some form of publication/public disclosure. Similarly a ...
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1answer
44 views

How do I determine whether or not a book cover and its imagery is in the public domain?

I'd like to use scans/photos of old book covers in a product I'm selling. Are the laws regarding the images on the cover different from the ones regarding the content of the book? How to I check to ...
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2answers
56 views

do we have to register our trademark to be valid… can we take a legal action if someone is using similar trademark but our is not registered?

My question is about do we have to register our trademark to be valid. 1. can we take a legal action if someone is using similar trademark but our is not registered?
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3answers
123 views

Can copying simple general code cause copyright infringement? And is it even possible to avoid that?

Imagine that during writing software for the employer, I created simple helper function IsPositiveNumber(x) which returns true if x > 0 and false otherwise. Or function TrimBlanks(text) which returns ...
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1answer
49 views

can we legally use the source code of customer software without asking them?

My question is can we use the source code of the software that we made for previous customer and we use that source code again legally without his permission? can he take any legal action ?
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152 views

Legality of the use of commercial fonts available for free from uxfree.com

I am interested in using the Futura PT family of fonts in a web application for the company at which I work. I initially found Futura PT listed on fonts.google.com, but the font wasn't available for ...
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1answer
210 views

Can an ex-employer sue ex-employees for using work experience gained for future endeavours?

In this bloomberg article, 5 ex-employees of a hedge fund were sued by their ex-employer for starting a trading outfit. https://www.bloomberg.com/news/features/2018-11-19/the-triple-jeopardy-of-ke-xu-...
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1answer
31 views

Does creating an unpaid event poster for a commercial event constitute commercial use?

Licenses of artworks or stock photos often state that they are free for non-commercial use. Assume I create a poster for an event. I do not sell the poster, but the event is commercial (has an entry ...
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1answer
52 views

Who owns the logo of a company after the company declares bankruptcy?

Who owns the logo of a company after the company declares bankruptcy? For example who owns the logo for toys R'us after they declare bankrupt?
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31 views

In principle, what actions might be open to Lego in this situation?

It's my understanding that Lego System A/S, doing business as The Lego Group, no longer holds a registered design protection or design patents on the Lego interlocking block system itself, hence the ...
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55 views

Copying programming problems (with proper citation) in order to write explanations on how to solve them in a blog/website.

I will be doing two things: Make a blog/website and copy and paste algorithmic questions and other programming problems word by word (could be from books or other websites) and properly cite them. ...
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1answer
26 views

Partial usage of third-party content in a mobile application

I notice few applications in App Store use articles from news web-sites such a New York Time, The Guardian etc. But, they do not use photos or graphics (actually they use their own photos and ...
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2answers
126 views

Commercial usage of photos of extreme close-up of popular electronics

Let's say I make a photo of iPhone screen through the microscope, so field of view of the photo is just several pixels and individual RGB components of the screen are visible - so it's not possible ...
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2answers
88 views

Is Unsplash a liability trap?

They claim to provide photos for universal use under a perpetual no-royalty no-attribution license. From https://unsplash.com/license All photos published on Unsplash can be used for free. You ...
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2answers
56 views

Can I write about a *copy* of a dead celebrity?

I'm writing a science fiction novel and I want to use Jim Morrison (lead singer for The Doors who died 47 years ago) as a minor character. Actually, it is a copy of Jim Morrison uploaded after his ...
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1answer
186 views

Revoking my right to defend my Intellectual Property by using Let's Encrypt

Agreement: https://letsencrypt.org/documents/LE-SA-v1.1.1-August-1-2016.pdf Section of interest: BY WAY OF FURTHER EXPLANATION REGARDING THE SCOPE OF THE DISCLAIMER, AND WITHOUT WAIVING OR ...
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1answer
36 views

Derivative softwares copyrigths from a more generic software

Imagine consultancy C has a generic software for analyzing data S. Now C has a client C1 and from the software S it derives a software S1 to analyzed some specific data for C1. The overall dependency ...
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1answer
37 views

Copyright on code from public source

Let's imagine consultancy A develops a code for client B that use some free available code from a website so it's a derivative work from the free code (MIT license). Can consultancy A re-use the same ...
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1answer
50 views

software copyright : implementing the same class structure but for different specific clients and purpose

Let's assume the same consultancy implements for client A a software to analyze text data from internal communication of the company. The client B asked the same software to analyze text data from ...
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1answer
33 views

How to manage intellectual property right for different clients from a consultancy

let's say company A is a consultancy in field XX and develops software solutions for client B. Client B clearly retains the IP of the work done. Then company A will have 2 more clients C and D. Now, ...
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2answers
689 views

If I don't patent my invention, how closely can a competitor copy my product?

Introduction: I had an idea for how to make a certain product much better. I'm currently in the prototyping stage for a product based on that idea. That idea (the solution to the problem of improving ...