2. Do I need to protect my writing with copyright registration?

Yes.  If your unpublished manuscript is used without your permission and the work has not been registered, your remedies are severely restricted if you have not registered the work with the U.S. Copyright Office.

3. How do I protect my music?

As with drawn or written work, the best protection for music is early copyright registration. There are two forms of registration which may apply to music: registration of the written music, and registration of the sound recording. A songwriter who performs his or her own works should secure both forms of protection.

4. How is “entertainment law” different from copyright law?

“Entertainment law” is grounded in the copyright licensing of works used in the entertainment field, such as musical or dramatic works used in television or film, but entertainment agreements may also encompass matters which go beyond acquisition of rights, distribution of the work and division of proceeds, such as options, production financing, personal services, name credits, and trademarks. 

5. Is graphic design protected by copyright?

Graphic design covers many different forms of graphic art. Some graphic design is copyrightable, some is not–typefaces, for example, are not protected by copyright. Graphics, the written material which accompanies the graphics, and sometimes the layout of the graphics can be protected by copyright. Many graphic designers mistakenly do not seek copyright protection for any of their work, and in consequence suffer if their designs are re-purposed by clients without express permission.

6. Can a website be copyrighted?

It is more accurate to say that the elements of a website which are copyrightable can be registered. A website may have many copyrightable elements, such as the images, the text, and perhaps the underlying design of the website. These elements can–and should–be registered separately. A website should never be simply registered page by page.

7. What is licensing?

“Licensing” is the term for granting or obtaining permission from the owner to use a trademark or copyright.

8. How do I license my trademark or copyright?

A “license” is the formal permission you grant to someone for use of your trademark or copyright. The terms under which you grant your license should be governed by a written agreement.

9. How do I license someone else’s trademark or copyright?

As with granting a license, the terms under which a license is obtained for usage of a property should be governed by the terms of a written agreement.

10. Does a license have to be exclusive?

No. A license can be exclusive or nonexclusive, and can be restricted in a variety of ways.