Join us as we spotlight select chapters of Venable’s popular Advertising Law Tool Kit, which helps marketing teams navigate their organization’s legal risk. Click here to download the entire Tool Kit, and tune in to the Ad Law Tool Kit Show podcast, to hear an author of this chapter dive deeper into copyright counseling and protection in this week’s episode.

A properly maintained copyright portfolio is essential to any successful brand owner. Copyright can extend to advertisement copy, manuals, visuals, art, photography, storyboards, scripts, film, video, online components, mobile apps, social media posts, websites, music, developed characters appearing in ads, and logos.

From the outset, it is vital to ensure that you will own the rights to the intellectual property (IP) being created. If any content is created by someone who is not an employee operating in the scope of employment, you need a written agreement in place to ensure ownership, through either a work-for-hire agreement or an assignment, with special nuances in some states, such as California.Continue Reading Copyright Counseling and Protection: An Excerpt from the Advertising Law Tool Kit

Episode 9 of the Ad Law Tool Kit Show, “Copyright Counseling and Protection,” is now available. Listen here, or search for it in your favorite podcast player.

Maintaining a robust copyright portfolio is crucial for brand owners. Copyright is a universe almost as big as Marvel’s, covering materials from ad copy to music and social media posts.

In this episode, I talk to Venable partner Justin Pierce about how it’s vital to secure ownership rights through agreements, clear third-party content, register copyrights, and have work-for-hire contracts. Staying updated on copyright trends and checking insurance coverage are essential for comprehensive copyright protection.Continue Reading Listen to Episode 9 of Venable’s Ad Law Tool Kit Show—”Copyright Counseling and Protection”

On February 6, 2024, in Philpot v. Independent Journal Review, the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Fourth Circuit issued a copyright fair use decision in a photograph infringement case that is noteworthy for a number of reasons. Those who plan to use photos based on a fair use defense should take heed of this decision.

In this case, photographer Larry Philpot sued news website Independent Journal Review for using Philpot’s photo of singer Ted Nugent in an online article. One of the more interesting facts here was that Philpot uploaded his photo to Wikimedia Commons, which is governed by a Creative Commons license requiring attribution. In other words, he simply required that users of his photo give him attribution, not pay him. Users could use Philpot’s photo free of charge, provided they included the following attribution: “Photo Credit: Larry Philpot of” Instead, Independent Journal Review hyperlinked to Mr. Nugent’s Wikipedia page, where the photo was featured.Continue Reading Fourth Circuit Hands Photographer a Clean Sweep Victory in Copyright Fair Use Appeal Over News Website’s Use of Free of Charge Photo