[d at DCC] Can a guitar have a copyright?
mezzo1 at gmail.com
Thu Apr 1 11:00:17 EDT 2010
Excellent Russel, thanks for the information.
On Thu, Apr 1, 2010 at 10:51 AM, Russell McOrmond <russell at flora.ca> wrote:
> On Wed, 31 Mar 2010, Alex Jillard wrote:
> > My brother builds custom guitars, does he have a copyright on the design
> > of that guitar (shape of the body, etc?). For a side project, he also
> > built a guitar partially out of lego, using a Stratocaster as a
> > template, but building the parts that are not critical to the structure
> > of the guitar out of lego. These parts are essentially the wings of the
> > guitar, knob ends, etc. Can this have a copyright as well? Someone
> > else has copied this idea (making a lego statocaster) and is getting
> > some minor press coverage for it. I'm wondering if we have any way of
> > forcing him (or the magazines writing the articles) to give credit for
> > the design/idea to my brother.
> I am not a lawyer (IANAL), and thus am not going to offer anything that
> might be confused as legal advice.
> I do want to comment on the logic of the question.
> You can't copyright ideas, just expressions of ideas, so no way to
> impose through the power of the state (through the legal system) someone
> to give credit for an idea. Going all legalistic doesn't tend to win you
> friends, or gain positive press coverage anyway -- and more social methods
> would be far more effective. More carrots, less sticks -- and please,
> don't do as the outgoing recording industry does and hit their potential
> customers with both the carrots and the sticks.
> So we are talking about designs which might be offered design patents,
> copyright, or may even have trademark implications. Again, I'm not going
> to dive into which I think may apply to these Fender or Squier
> Stratocaster repicas (Strat copies?) as IANAL.
> If the design of the guitar is offered exclusive rights then what your
> brother was doing of making a derivative of the statocaster was illegal.
> If the designs of the guitars are not offered exclusive rights, then not
> only is what your brother is doing legal but also that what this
> "someone else" is doing.
> This is a common logical flaw that many "creators" have -- that they
> want exclusive rights granted to them to stop others from building on
> their work or doing parallel innovation, but required limits on the
> exclusive rights of others in order to be allowed to create in the first
> "The protection afforded in copyright is to the creator as water is to
> humans; too little and you dehydrate and die, too much and you drown and
> die. Survival requires understanding this delicate balance." (blah, blah,
> Russell McOrmond, Internet Consultant: <http://www.flora.ca/>
> Please help us tell the Canadian Parliament to protect our property
> rights as owners of Information Technology. Sign the petition!
> http://digital-copyright.ca/petition/ict/ http://KillBillC61.ca
> "The government, lobbied by legacy copyright holders and hardware
> manufacturers, can pry control over my camcorder, computer,
> home theatre, or portable media player from my cold dead hands!"
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