Saturday, March 28, 2009

Copyright Matters

Pine Belt Quilters invited Rhonda Blasingame from Jackson to speak at our March 18 meeting on Copyright. Rhonda is passionate about this topic, as illustrated by her "soapbox." Everything she makes is original and she explained the difference between copying a pattern and creating an original design. She said that although quilters have always generously shared with each other, we need to be knowledgeable about protecting the rights of others.
As this relates to quilters, she explained that photographs, quilts seen at a show, quilts pictured in a magazine are the property of the maker and cannot be used without permission. When one creates a tangible object, she holds the copyright (example: publishes a book or article, composes a musical score, writes a song, paints a picture, designs a pattern, makes a quilt, that person holds the copyright, whether or not it is officially registered with the US Copyright office).
Rhonda provided several links for more detailed information. She also fielded questions to help the group understand what constituted copyright violation.
The following is quoted directly from "Copyright Basics"

"Copyright is a form of protection provided by the laws of the United States
(title 17, U. S. Code) to the authors of 'original works of authorship,' including literary, dramatic, musical, artistic, and certain other intellectual works. This protection is available to both published and unpublished works. Section 106 of the 1976."
To paraphrase, the owner has these rights:
• To reproduce the work;
• To prepare derivative works based upon the work;
• To sell or lease the work;
• To perform the work publicly;
• To display the work publicly.