re Copyright (was What's the definition of a published author)

Subject: re Copyright (was What's the definition of a published author)
From: "nosnivel -at- netvision -dot- net -dot- il" <nosnivel -at- netvision -dot- net -dot- il>
To: "TECHWR-L" <techwr-l -at- lists -dot- raycomm -dot- com>
Date: Wed, 17 Dec 2003 03:10:57 -0500

> If you have to register the work before you can take legal
> action against someone for an infringement, it seems like
> registration is necessary for all practical purposes.

It's not necessary, but it's eminently helpful. "See, I registered
copyright on this poem in 1975" is more convincing than "Here is a
gentleman who will testify he heard me read this poem in public
in 1975."

Also, at one time-- I'm not sure this is still true, because
copyright law changes so confusingly-- there were damages you
could sue for if the copyright was registered but not if it
wasn't. Even unregistered, though, if you can prove that you're
the copyright owner you can get someone else to cease and desist
from appropriating your work.

BTW, have you seen the fine print on the Lord of the Rings
posters that claims the names of the characters, places, and
events in the story as trademarks? Names of events as
trademarks. Ah, to be a lawyer in America...

Mark L. Levinson
nosnivel -at- netvision -dot- net -dot- il

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