copyright?

i would like to know some things about copyright:

  1. how do you claim it?

  2. what to do if somebody uses your artwork without your permission?

  3. and what to do if somebody claims your artwork (so the person steals your work)?

if you have more questions about copyright you can post them here.

Some like © is free as far as I know of while others like ® and TM are much more expensive.
2 and 3, simple, report them.

What country are you talking about, here? If it’s the US, then all authors have copyright of their works when they create them, by default. You don’t even have to put the little © symbol. If you really want to bring an infringement lawsuit against someone, though, you’ll be a lot better off if your work has been registered with the US Copyright office. If not, you’d better have some kind of real proof (i.e. public display, strong-crypto signed and date stamped), previous to the infringers display of the work or you’ll probably have a tough time getting anything done.

And, contrary to urban legend, mailing the work to yourself and claiming the US Post Office postmark as proof of date doesn’t cut it.

If you have either registered your work, or can clearly demonstrate your prior ownership of the work, then go get yourself a copyright attorney and sue. Regardless of what the RIAA or MPAA would try to get folks to believe, copyright violation is not a major criminal offense. You’ll be taking them to civil court.

Why the ?'s? Is someone violating the copyrights on your work?

nope, but its always handy to know. if i want to sell my work i dont want to have problems with people who want to make money with other peoples property.

i live in the netherlands.

Report them to whom?

No, it is like Harkyman said. YOU will have to go to court and YOU will have to PROVE it is your work.

Harkyman,
What do you mean the urban legend about mailing it to yourself? I could understand it would be easy to mail and empty envelope, get a postmark and put something in it after the fact.

i would like to know some things about copyright:

  1. how do you claim it?

  2. what to do if somebody uses your artwork without your permission?

  3. and what to do if somebody claims your artwork (so the person steals your work)?

if you have more questions about copyright you can post them here.

In the netherlands you have auteursrecht immediately when you make something. That means that it’s yours…

You can actually place the copyright symbol on your work I believe because the copyright is there once you make it … the TM (trademark) sign you have to claim first…

The definitive, legally-authoritative source of information about copyright in the US can be found at the Library of Congress web-site: http://www.loc.gov/copyright.

The © symbol denotes a claim of copyright and may be used by anyone, but note that the very-similar-looking ® symbol (registered trademark) may not be used except after a trademark registration has been granted.

Not to mention that ® and TM deal with trademarks, not copyrights, which while related to each other, are quite different concepts.

Copyrights ©, while free and automatic, can only be claimed on certain things such as films, works of art or ‘substantial’ literary works. You can’t claim copyright on a title or sentence or icon or logo. It has to be ‘bigger’, whatever that means. I’m not sure if a blender render would be considered as a large enough work to be copyrighted.

On the other hand, you have trademarks ™ which may be granted on anything of any size, such as a title or a ‘word’ or a logo. But, you must explicitly apply for them and be granted the trademark by your government. It is not automatic and it’s usually far from free. But there are international treaties that govern them so you are reasonably assured that if your government grants you a trademark on something, then it will apply worldwide via various treaties which I know nothing about.

Unless you happen to live in a country like North Korea which doesn’t recognize any reasonable agreements.

Best to talk to a lawyer about these things. The internet, including self-claimed lawyers, are NOT reliable sources of legal information, unless it is from the judiciary or the government itself.

Copyright laws differ from country to country. However, generally the onus of proof is on the person claiming the copyright. So if you accuse someone of profiting from your work without permission, then it is up to you to prove your claims in the courts.

You could contact something like a “chamber of commerce” or reputable organisations who are in the know. They should be able to point you to the right direction.