library wall art
- February 5, 2005 @ 11:39amdonnabuddy says:Is it an infringement of copyright law to allow an artist to do his own interpretation of book characters on a library wall? :?: :?:
- February 10, 2005 @ 1:56pmvbibliona says:
Is it an infringement of copyright law to allow an artist to do his own interpretation of book characters on a library wall? :?: :?:I'm not sure this would really be a copyright question. Characters themselves cannot be copyrighted. They can, however, be registered in other ways, which is why one cannot sell a cake with a Disney character as the decoration without paying a licensing fee. But two points which might turn this in your favor are: 1) The library is not selling cakes, so you're not making a profit from someone else's character. 2) Depends on the character: If you're doing Clifford the Big Red Dog, something that has its own line of character-based ancillary products then you are -possibly- interfering with their ability to sell their product, either by reducing demand or tarnishing their image. But if your artist is interpreting their own vision of a character from an non-illustrated novel and that character has never really been depicted somewhere else....that ought to be okay.
- February 10, 2005 @ 3:24pmross says:I would be careful with this... I can't find the link now, but there definitely have been places (a nursery school in particular) sued over this exact thing. I don't remember the details, but I would suggest that this might be very risky behavior.
- February 11, 2005 @ 9:33amdonnabuddy says:
I would be careful with this... I can't find the link now, but there definitely have been places (a nursery school in particular) sued over this exact thing. I don't remember the details, but I would suggest that this might be very risky behavior.Thanks! I thought I'd heard of such a thing, too. I wouldn't want to be involved in it, either way.....but I'd heard of someone thinking about it! I wanted to be able to give some advice.
- March 3, 2005 @ 9:38amCOvalle says:Characters can certainly be copyrighted. For a recent case, look at Gaiman v. McFarlane. Some parts are copyrightable, other parts are not. Stock characters are not copyrightable, but characters with some originality or creativity probably are. For a current lawsuit, Marvel v. NCSoft is discussing some of these issues.
That being said, it certainly wouldn't look good to sue for this purpose.
- March 7, 2005 @ 1:39pmCarrie says:I received a similar question recently from a school librarian. I think it is one thing to copy one's expression (their original work) - like copying Mickey Mouse who does exist as a cartoon drawing - and another thing if someone creates their own expression of a character in a drawing from a novel where characters do not exist as a cartoon or drawing or other visual.
I think the first is probably infringing.
I think the second is not.
For example, I am reading a courtroom drama right now. What if I drew a picture of the prosecuting attorney, what I think he looks like, taking the ideas I get from the book and creating my own expression? What expression/copyrighted work am I copying? Yes, I would not have an idea of what the prosecuting attorney looks like without having read the book, but it is not copying.
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