Memes Are Everywhere

Memes Are Everywhere

By Kat Grant, St. Louis University School of Law Memes are everywhere. They are an inescapable aspect of pop culture. But have you ever wondered if a meme is copyrighted, or made a meme and thought can I copyright this? Well, the short answer is it depends. What Are Memes? A meme can be any image or series of images…

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A Legal Guide To Fonts & Typefaces: Bet You Didn’t Think This Could Be Important!

A Legal Guide to Fonts & Typefaces: Bet You Didn’t Think This Could Be Important!

By Helena Guye, University of Missouri School of Law Before we begin, it is important to set out some definitions. While it is fairly common for people to use the terms “font” and “typeface” interchangeably, distinctions should be noted: A font is the underlying computer program that controls how a collection of characters and numbers (sometimes called glyphs) is displayed. A…

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The Transformation Of Mechanical Music Licenses

The Transformation of Mechanical Music Licenses

By McKenna McAreavy, St. Louis University School of Law Technology makes it easier than ever for listeners to consume music, but on the flip side it has greatly complicated how creatives behind the music are paid. Though live performances are still going strong, the straightforward act of buying music has largely become a thing of the past. Music streaming apps, such…

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The Clock Is Ticking! The Supreme Court Reaffirms Importance Of Early Copyright Registration

The Clock is Ticking! The Supreme Court Reaffirms Importance of Early Copyright Registration

By Helena Guye, University of Missouri School of Law While perhaps not its most controversial recent decision, the United States Supreme Court recently issued a ruling that will have a notable impact on prospective copyright holders. The unanimous ruling inFourth Estate Public Benefit Corporation v. Wall-Street.com, published in March 2019, ultimately holds that before an individual or entity can bring a lawsuit…

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Brammer V. Violent Hues: The Internet Confronts Fair Use

Brammer v. Violent Hues: The Internet Confronts Fair Use

by Laura Marsh On June 11, 2018, the United States District Court for the Eastern District of Virginia handed down a decision that has left many copyright attorneys and experts scratching their heads. Photographer/plaintiff Russell Brammer sued production company Violent Hues Productions, LLC for copyright infringement in September of 2017, but the defendant company’s motion for summary judgment was granted based…

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Trademarking: Because A Name Isn’t Just A “Name”

Trademarking: Because a Name Isn’t Just a “Name”

by Madison Silvey A few weeks ago, many across the nation were a buzz * scratch that * a flutter when White House Press Secretary Sarah Huckabee Sanders released this tweet: Supporters and protestors alike took to the streets and to their computers to ensure that the Red Hen restaurant knew their stance on this hot-button issue. However, many of…

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Sufficient Creativity Required For Copyright Protection

Sufficient Creativity Required For Copyright Protection

by Jake Villarreal The U.S. Constitution grants Congress the power to create copyright law, which is meant to spur artistic and literary development by producing creative works. But what exactly qualifies as a creative work? The U.S. Copyright Office requires that anything receiving copyright protection have “some minimum degree of creativity.” That standard came from the U.S. Supreme Court’s decision…

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The Music Modernization Act: What It Is And What’s Next

The Music Modernization Act: What It Is And What’s Next

by Laura Marsh The Music Modernization Act (“MMA”) is a bill in Congress on its way to becoming law. It has brought together songwriters, music publishers, artists, record labels, and streaming services in an unprecedented fashion. Even though these groups typically do not see eye to eye when it comes to copyright issues, the MMA would mark a significant victory…

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Are “Selves” Necessary To Own Selfies?

Are “Selves” Necessary to Own Selfies?

by Madison Silvey Who owns a “selfie”? On April 23rd of this year, the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit determined that a monkey cannot. Rewind to 2011. Naruto, a six-year-old crested macaque from Indonesia, snapped a quick photo of himself using nature photographer David John Slater’s camera. Slater, who was on assignment in Indonesia at the time, then…

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Chihuly Sued By Assistant

Chihuly Sued by Assistant

by Claire Henleben Renowned glass artist Dale Chihuly has used teams of unpaid assistants and contractors for the past 15 years to help create his extravagant works of art, which have been shown in over 200 botanical gardens, museums, and galleries worldwide. One such former assistant, Michael Moi, recently sued Mr. Chihuly over his claimed failure to compensate him after…

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