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Tuesday, March 31, 2015
My GRAVITY lawsuit and how it affects every writer who sells to Hollywood - Tess Gerritsen

My GRAVITY lawsuit and how it affects every writer who sells to Hollywood - Tess Gerritsen: "In 1999, I sold the film rights to my book GRAVITY to New Line Productions. The contract stipulates that if a movie is made based on my book, I will receive ‘based upon’ credit, a production bonus, and a percentage of net profits. The book is about a female medical doctor/astronaut/Mission Specialist who is stranded aboard the International Space Station after the rest of her crew is killed in a series of accidents."
This looks like more of a contract-related lawsuit and less of a copyright-related lawsuit.

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Saturday, March 7, 2015
WGAw Registration vs. Copyright Registration

GOOD INFORMATION

WGAw Registration vs. Copyright Registration: "First, although copyright protection exists at the moment of creation, registration with the Copyright Office is required before a lawsuit can be brought. Because it can take up to six months from the time the application is mailed to the Copyright Office until the application is processed and returned, if the writer needs to immediately file a lawsuit (i.e., in order to enjoin the movie's distribution), he must apply for an expedited registration, for which the Copyright Office charges an additional $580.

Second, if the writer registers the script with the Copyright Office only after the infringement has taken place, he will be barred from recovering attorneys fees or statutory damages in the lawsuit."
Here's the good information.

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Monday, March 2, 2015
PrimeTime: The Truth About Protecting Your Work - Script Magazine

BAD INFORMATION

PrimeTime: The Truth About Protecting Your Work - Script Magazine: "A copyright, WGA or Protectrite registration simply provides a piece of EVIDENCE as to when and where you first held ownership of your material.
So if you registered or copyrighted your script on June 4, 2011, it does not mean that as of June 4, 2011, your script is protected.  It means you have one piece of evidence saying that on June 4, 2011, this particular piece of intellectual property was in your possession."
Once again, misinformation rules. A copyright registration is the only protection that ensures that your complaint qualifies for statutory damages in the event that it is litigated.

For legal advice on screenplay/copyright protection, I recommend speaking only with litigators who work in the field of intellectual property litigation. YMMV.

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