Entertainment law is a branch of law concerned specifically with the property issues that surround pieces of entertainment like books, movies and visual arts. In the entertainment industry, protecting your work from being exploited or plagiarized by others is an imminent concern. In North Carolina, the intellectual property rights of artists are protected by several laws that includes copyright and trademark provisions.
What is A Copyright?
A copyright includes the privilege to exclusively produce a certain form of entertainment, and the copyright holder must give consent for others to be able to use it. Under North Carolina law, the holder of a copyright has the right to negotiate licenses for the production of the copyrighted material that others might want to use. A copyright does not last forever, and all procedures surrounding copyrights are governed by state entertainment laws. You will want to familiarize yourself with the specifics, whether you want to simply protect your property rights or you are interested in selling licenses for your work.
What is a Trademark?
A symbol or other notable visual characteristic that people associate with a brand is a trademark. Visual cues are key in the entertainment industry to establish product recognition. A trademark must be registered with the U.S. patent and trademark office, and it does not expire. With a trademark, a company may begin to establish brand identity.
How Can a North Carolina Attorney Help?
Deciding whether you need a trademark or copyright is often a decision best made with the advice of an attorney in Durham that has specialized in entertainment law. The filing process in North Carolina can also go more smoothly with an attorney to guide you.