Legal Issues in Copyright

Outdated Copyrights


I have always been interested in do it yourself plans and worked upon searching for these. Before the internet was commonly used, I searched books and magazines for the same. I discovered many copies of old magazines like Mechanix Illustrated, Science and Mechanics and many others of the kind offered lots of such do it yourself plans. The internet definitely made things much easier and quicker and helped in clearing many doubts about copyrighted works.After having worked upon hundreds of such articles, I discovered that articles with expired copyright entered a “public domain” and was accessible by anyone for any purpose; no one could claim any copyright infringement on these works. All materials published in the United States between 1923 and 1964 were issued a 28 year copyright which had to be renewed in the 28th year. If this was not done prior to the expiry date, the project entered the public domain and its copyright could not be refreshed. Any work that was published before 1923 has now automatically entered the public domain without any exceptions. In 1964, copyright laws were changed and works registered in this year were copyrighted for a much longer time. However, in certain cases, publications up to 1978 are found in the public domain.An expired copyright invites all kinds of infringement and plagiarism. Anyone can use this work at any time for any work. This does not only include printed material but also audios and videos. These projects can be reproduced, reprinted, exhibited, broadcasted, or altered.Anyone willing to claim copyrights over a public domain item must change it considerably and then apply for the authority of its rights. The project in the original form has been accepted as a copyright expired material therefore, it cannot be registered after the expiry date.When copying another author’s piece, you must be very careful of his moral and legal rights or your work will be accused of copyright violation. Works dating back to before 1923 are definitely, without any doubt, in the public domain and there is no objection in reproducing it. Any project that interests you and was published between 1923 and 1964 will most probably be in the public domain but its status should be confirmed by checking records at the United States Copyright Office. This can more conveniently be done online. Works dating back to even before 1928 can also be found on many website, is one of the examples.

Music Copyrights Agreements to Make You Legal Owner of The Assigned Music


Why Music Copyrights Agreements are necessary? How do they protect the right of Music composer/writer and motion picture producer/ Video/CD/Album producer? The agreement between Music writer also known as assignor and, the motion picture producer/ Video/CD/Album producer, also known as Assignees, shows the transfers or sell of music rights including title, copyright and interest to the assignee, in exchange of certain monetary consideration, without actual royalty sharing against the use of the said music. The agreement provides free hand to the assignees for the use of the musical work and the assignor also stipulates the nature of the transfer through the agreement.The Contract has certain important features, provisions and clauses, which are binding on the both Assignor and Assignee and that include:* Contact information of the parties* Date and place* Musical right transfer clauses* Provisions for Representations and Warranties* Compensation* Type of Payments* Non Royalty sharing Provisions* Signature of both partiesThe signature of both parties on the Contract makes it legally binding on both parties and can be produced in the court of law or Copy Right Office for any claims against the copy right violations.There are various reasons, which prompts, a music writer transfer his/her musical right to the third person and these reasons can be summed up as follows:* The financial constraints* Inability to release their own songs* Desire to find larger audience for their songs* Gain popularityThus, once the ownership right to the music is transferred to the Assignee, through the contract, the transferee becomes the sole owner of the musical work. He also holds the similar rights as held by the original music writer and enjoys all responsibilities, protections and other rights of a Copyright holder. The music writer also can not lodge a claim against the music right violation, if the assignor uses part or full music to his financial or advertising purposes.