What The Frap: The Blending Of Stealing And Appropriation

What the Frap: The Blending of Stealing and Appropriation

There is a lawsuit brewing against Starbucks. Internationally regarded Brooklyn street artist and muralist Maya Hayuk is suing the coffee giant for stealing her brightly colored, kaleidoscopic artwork. And this isn’t the first time she is taking legal against a large corporation on fair use grounds. Maya Hayuk’s vibrant, geometric work allegedly caught Starbuck’s attention last fall. According to Hayuk’s…

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The Basics Of Copyright

The Basics of Copyright

What is a Copyright?             Here on our law student blog we often talk about copyrights and intellectual property, and I thought it might help to write a quick summary of what a copyright actually is. A copyright exists when a band or any other artist creates a physical copy of their work. So when a band writes down their…

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Republicans Run Afoul Artists

Republicans Run Afoul Artists

Donald Trump decided to run for president and his entrance was truly gaudy. As he rode the escalator down to speak at the podium, Neil Young’s “Rockin’ in the Free World” played in the background. Neil Young immediately told Trump and media sources to quit rockin’ in the free world. Trump, unlike most politicians bought the necessary rights and paid…

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Vandalism Charge From Renowned Street Artist

Vandalism Charge from Renowned Street Artist

Shepard Fairey was commissioned to paint an 18-story mural in Detroit but he may have left his mark on more buildings than the city bargained for and police are now investigating. Most know Shepard Fairey by his iconic “HOPE” campaign poster for President Obama. A warrant for the famous street artist’s arrest was filed in 36th District Court last Friday.…

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For Your Enhanced Listening

For Your Enhanced Listening

Legal Issues for Using Music in Torture The United States’ use of “enhanced interrogations” has been in the news lately. Many Americans don’t know that music is an integral part of the governments torture protocol. A wide range of copyrighted songs have been used by the US Military, CIA, and other government groups including children’s theme songs, cat food themes,…

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From The Outside, Looking In

From the Outside, Looking In

Voyeuristic photography is deemed as art, rather than an invasion of privacy. It sounds like good premise for a bad horror film: lurking in the shadows of his darkened apartment, a photographer holds a camera equipped with a telephoto lens, snapping unguarded shots of a couple and their young children through the floor-to-ceiling windows of the family’s loft, located just…

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Illegally Downloading Music: Where’s The Harm?

Illegally Downloading Music: Where’s the Harm?

According to a 2013 study by The Institute for Prospective Technological Studies, piracy has a positive effect of music sales. They concluded that the majority of individuals who illegally download music are more likely to purchase that music than if they had not downloaded it. Mark Mulligan of Forrester Research has said that, “The people who file-share are the ones…

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Are Patent Trolls As Bad As They Seem?

Are Patent Trolls as Bad as they Seem?

Patent Trolls or Non Practicing Entities (NPE) are companies which own patents but do not use them to create products. Instead, NPE’s license patents to other developers. NPE’s have come to be known as “patent trolls” due to the large amount of litigation they create and their ability to profit solely off the ownership of intellectual property. These companies as…

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New York Senate Protects Art Authenticators With New Bill

New York Senate Protects Art Authenticators with New Bill

The New York State Senate recently approved a bill on June 15th to protect art authenticators from unfounded litigation. The bill amends the New York Art and Cultural Affairs Law and limits the liability of art authenticators and appraisers. The bill, which attempts to remedy the recent trend of high cost litigation towards authenticators, is a good first step to…

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Local Designer Stands Up To Corporate Giant

Local Designer Stands up to Corporate Giant

Powerful corporations often think they can take advantage of small business owners with no repercussions – Melissa Lay proves otherwise. It takes a lot of courage for a small business owner to stand up to a corporate giant in any business setting. Melissa Lay, an Oregon designer, did just that when she claimed Target copied one of the graphic designs…

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