Entertainment law is the package of services, including contracts and copyrights, that is intended for 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. Artists have certain intellectual property rights in Washington, which are protected in part by copyright and trademark laws.
What is A Copyright?
A party holding a copyright can exclusively produce a certain form of entertainment, requiring any others who want to use it to get consent first. Under Washington 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. 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 Washington Attorney Help?
Deciding whether you need a trademark or copyright is often a decision best made with the advice of an attorney in Prosser that has specialized in entertainment law. The filing process in Washington can also go more smoothly with an attorney to guide you.