Startup copyrights issues come up frequently in counseling legal sessions. For many, they perceive that there is a open filed of content hat any startup can avail itself of that would help push their business forward. Not so, is the truth. Savvy business starters know that their intellectual property gives its business import and is an asset for its business.
Among the many questions raised, it is normal to encounter considerations for patenting an idea. It seems the first concept usually enquired about. Other aspects of intellectual property, i.e., trademark and copyright, feature close and as equally as important. Copyrights and trademarks are instrumental for branding. Branding set the startups identification in the marketplace apart for its competitors or imitators. Once that trademark or copyright is secured, those competitors or imitators better beware.
Being truthful and original in the making of what sets apart your startup is in deed laborious. It is just not advisable to pirate others content to get ahead or to set up a business. Section 102 (a) of the United States Copyright Act focuses on ‘original works. The Sections emphasizes, “original works of authorship fixed in any tangible medium of expression.” Inherently, the work must not be copied from other’s work, or it must be in a “tangible medium” regarding ability to be seen or reproduced.
Startups need to be mindful that copyright law protects their websites, its inherent content, to include embedded videos and artwork on its site. That which is in a tangible form, and not just an idea, can be protected under copyright law. Sections 102 (b) spells out that “[i]n no case does copyright protection for an original work of authorship extend to any idea, procedure, process, system, method of operation, concept, principle, or discovery, regardless of the form in which it is described, explained, illustrated, or embodied in such work.” There are possible ways of considering use, “fair use”, which will be addressed in subsequent posts is important to avoid conflicts in business.