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Copyrights vest to a creator of an original work of authorship once that work is fixed in a tangible form. Types of original works can include literary, musical, artistic, and certain other creative expressions, both published and unpublished. Registration is not necessary for the copyright protection to vest. Nonetheless, registering is necessary for enforcement in federal court and to recover statutory damages and attorneys’ fees from an infringer. To preserve the right to statutory damages and attorneys’ fees, an application must be filed within three months of publication or at least before infringement begins.

At Tsircou Intellectual Property Law, we assist our clients in registering, licensing and enforcing copyrights. We are also of benefit prior to the creation of a copyrightable work. At this early stage, we ensure that important issues such as ownership, financial considerations, and other concerns are identified and resolved and subsequently prepare agreements between the parties

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The Long Reach of A Big Hammer: DMCA’s Creep Into Corporate Adjudication of Pre-Crime

When the DMCA was made into law at the turn of the century, the excitement over new powers given to the enforcement of intellectual property rights was tempered by deep concerns of possible regulatory overreach and unintended consequences. With the law having over a decade to now play out, some of the more consequential, albeit tangential, unintended consequences are beginning to show their head.

With DMCA Safe Harbor Removed, ISP’s Blown Into Stormy Water: But Don’t Grab the Life Rafts Yet

This article discuses a landmark ruling in BMG Rights Management LLC et al. v. Cox Enterprises Inc, a highly contentions case between an internet service provider (ISP) and a large-scale music rights holder. The dispute was between Cox Communications, the ISP, and BMG Rights Management, a company holding copyrights for numerous musical artists and songs. BMG alleged there was a high volume of music that was improperly downloaded, or pirated, through Cox Communication’s Internet service, and that when given notice of said infringements, Cox did not properly respond.

While a jury found Cox guilty of both direct and contributory copyright infringement, the real crux of the case was the ruling made in a motion for summary judgment, which made the above jury findings possible.

Media pundits have gotten the details of this case wrong. We unpack this holding, detail the consequences had the ruling gone the other way, and outline its impacts in the future.

“Your Assignment, Should You Choose to Enforce It”: New case law on IP assignment contracts obligates employers to diligently protect their legal rights

The United States Court of Appeals for the Federal Circuit, which hears all appeals involving patent law complaints, recently decided Personalized User Model, LLP, and Konig v. Google, Inc., case 14-1841/15-1022 (Fed. Cir., Aug. 18, 2015), which focused on an employment agreement for the assignment of intellectual property rights. This decision handed down important new guidelines for employers to take when dealing with enforcing assignments of employee’s IP