Be Prepared for Copyright Termination
Managing IP
March 1, 2012
The article covers the development of the Copyright Act with regard to the termination of copyright grants. The article explains the intent behind the termination right (the protection for authors who assign their rights for little compensation at a time when the value of those rights might be difficult, if not impossible, to predict) and the countervailing recognition that grantees often spend millions of dollars cultivating brands associated with artistic works, including the development, production, marketing, and distribution of the works. The article makes clear the complexities of the copyright termination process, and discusses the relevant case law in this context. Finally, it provides a series of important questions a rightsholder should ask upon receiving a termination notice for a copyrighted work.