Re: Copyrights and legal agreements

Subject: Re: Copyrights and legal agreements
From: "Accentuated Brandname Creativity, Inc." <acreatyv -at- SATURN -dot- NET>
Date: Mon, 16 Dec 1996 21:36:08 -0500

Chris Hamilton asked about this contract language:

"EMPLOYEE hereby acknowledges that any copyrights created while he/she is
an employee of (company name) shall be considered a word made for hire
with title thereto in (company name)."

Kim Shaw wrote:

>The copyright wording in the contract is so broad that I'd be
>uncomfortable signing it. Seems to me it would make sense for your
>employer to rewite that section per their attorney's memo, so that it's
>clear what they're claiming ownership to. If the company doesn't want
>to do that, you may want to check with an attorney before signing.

I agree. The sticking point is not the principle of who owns works
for hire, but the wording of the specific contract. It doesn't refer to
company time or company resources; it is broader than the Act, in that
anything copyrightable that you produce at home would belong to the
company. If that is not what they intend, the contractual language
should be modified to reflect their intentions; if the ambiguity is
intentional, look out for your own interests.

BTW does the language actually say "copyrights," "copyrightable work,"
or something else?

Chuck Brandstater
acreatyv -at- saturn -dot- net

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