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. The consent of the copyright holder for others to use the protected material is called a license. In North Carolina, the copyright holder has the exclusive privilege of negotiating any licenses it issues. The procedure for getting a copyright and how long it lasts once issued are governed by entertainment law. Aside from protecting your property rights, getting a copyright will allow you to sell licenses to others.

What is a Trademark?

A trademark is any noticeable characteristic that is associated with something, such as the symbol for a commercial brand. Trademarks can be key to establishing product recognition in the entertainment industry. Trademarks do not expire. They are obtained through registration with the U.S. patent and trademark office. Consumers recognize brands better when they have associated trademarks.

How Can a North Carolina Attorney Help?

Many attorneys in Fairview practice in entertainment law. They can give you particularized advice about whether you need a copyright or trademark, and they will also guide you in the process of securing these rights in North Carolina.