About the copyright of conjuring publication

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Lawrence Lee
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About the copyright of conjuring publication

Postby Lawrence Lee » December 7th, 2015, 6:29 pm

Hi,
I wonder if anyone could tell me where can I research the copyright of the conjuring publication. I came across a eBay seller who is selling the physical copies of "Last notes of Derek Dingle by Rich Marotta and Simon Lovell", but it is a PDF printed out version instead of the original 300 limited issued version. I emailed him about this issue but he told me that there is no research results in U.S Copyright Office website about this book and therefore he can do whatever he want. I have conducted some researches myself but cannot find most of the conjuring publications in the website (Greater Magic is an exception). Is there anyone could help to clear up this?

observer
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Re: About the copyright of conjuring publication

Postby observer » December 7th, 2015, 7:06 pm

You might let Rich Marotta know, at richmarotta.com

(contact info under "book now" on home page)

His site lists the book for sale @ $30 by the way.


per the FAQs at copyright.gov "Copyright exists from the moment the work is created. You will have to register, however, if you wish to bring a lawsuit for infringement of a U.S. work."

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lybrary
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Re: About the copyright of conjuring publication

Postby lybrary » December 7th, 2015, 7:37 pm

It is quite simple in the US:

If the work has been registered with the copyright office before the infringement happened you can sue for statutory damages ($750-$30k - judge decides) and also get your legal fees paid by the infringer. If the work was not officially registered you can only sue for actual damages and typically no legal fees.

The problem with actual damages is that you have to show what they are, and that can be difficult. Your legal fees will in many cases be a lot more than the damages. That makes it so hard to go after these bastards. (Including CARC - Conjuring Arts Research Center - who is infringing my Pabular copyrights and many other rights.)

The beauty of statutory damages is that you do not need to show anything. If it was willful infringement a judge can award up to $150k per infringement.

This is not legal advice, just my simplified understanding of it.
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Lawrence Lee
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Re: About the copyright of conjuring publication

Postby Lawrence Lee » December 7th, 2015, 7:42 pm

Yes, I already messaged Mr Marotta about this issue. While waiting for his reply, I am curious if the conjuring publishings should be or are being registered via Copyright Office. Or because those publishings are not for general pubic, the titles are registered under some different systems (I cannot even find any titles under Mr Stephen Minch or Lewis Ganson via the copyright website's research engine). As you may imagine, I want to response to him with some hard core legal evidence. The rip off copies are already damaging our ridiculously low-profit publishing works, the even more ridiculous and irresponsible answers of those sellers are really drawing me crazy :evil:
P.S: Yse, Mr Marotta is selling the book on his website, but I think it is a CD-ROM version or PDF version. It is not specific stated in the website, but I think the original limited copies were sold about $60.

Bill Mullins
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Re: About the copyright of conjuring publication

Postby Bill Mullins » December 7th, 2015, 8:32 pm

Lawrence Lee wrote: As you may imagine, I want to response to him with some hard core legal evidence.


First, are you sure that neither Marotta, Lovell, or the Dingle estate never sold hard copies? If they did and this is the source of the item, he can legally resell it. (Google "first sale doctrine").

It is best to let Marotta or the Dingle estate handle this. If it is a pirated item, as copyright holders they can get ebay to shut down the auction. Realistically speaking, there isn't much more than can practically be done about it, and they are the only ones who can make that happen.
Last edited by Bill Mullins on December 7th, 2015, 8:37 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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lybrary
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Re: About the copyright of conjuring publication

Postby lybrary » December 7th, 2015, 8:36 pm

Lawrence, many publications never get registered. Why? Well, because it costs money, takes time and requires effort. In the past some publications have been registered in magic, but as you have found out yourself, these are rather the exception than the rule in magic.
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Richard Kaufman
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Re: About the copyright of conjuring publication

Postby Richard Kaufman » December 7th, 2015, 8:40 pm

When a work is published, it is automatically protected by copyright. You do not need to register it. The eBay seller is both a fool and a liar.

Registering your copyright gives you the ability to sue in federal court over copyright infringement.
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Lawrence Lee
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Re: About the copyright of conjuring publication

Postby Lawrence Lee » December 8th, 2015, 3:11 am

[/quote]

First, are you sure that neither Marotta, Lovell, or the Dingle estate never sold hard copies? If they did and this is the source of the item, he can legally resell it. (Google "first sale doctrine").
[/quote]

Bill, I think Marotta and Lovell sold out their hard copies years ago, as only 300 signed and numbered copies were available. But what the eBay seller is selling are not those copies, it is a self printed copy from PDF file without the signature and the number. Of course, he can certainly print out his PDFs and enjoy them in the physical format. But anything involved in trading activities is strictly prohibited as far as I am concerned.

When I first contacted him about this issue, his first reaction was: I quote"I am no lawyer, but I am pretty sure the copyright has expired, since it was self published by Dingle, and he is dead. We are not selling his signature, but the information inside the material, and was published and paid for in full. Are you saying since my client has printed out a hard copy of his notes, he can not sell his property? If you are just interested in his signature, we can sell you one:) Just happen to have it on a couple of lecture notes of his "Original"!"

When I replied him that Marotta and Lovell are the actual copyright holders and even the copyright was belong to Dingle, the expire date of the publishing works after 2002 is 70 years after the death of the author. He simply replied that he has checked the registering, there is no results. So end of the story.

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lybrary
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Re: About the copyright of conjuring publication

Postby lybrary » December 8th, 2015, 6:59 am

Lawrence Lee wrote:

He simply replied that he has checked the registering, there is no results. So end of the story.[/quote]

He is wrong. The registration has nothing to do with the duration of copyrights. Registered and unregistered works enjoy the same duration of copyright protection.
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observer
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Re: About the copyright of conjuring publication

Postby observer » December 8th, 2015, 9:57 am

Buying a book that is protected by copyright and then copying it and selling those copies is about as straightforward a violation of copyright as there could possibly be.

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Re: About the copyright of conjuring publication

Postby Jonathan Townsend » December 8th, 2015, 10:35 am

A short email to Lowell with a link to the auction ...

something with wildcard copying and a blowoff about the damages... ah - DeCamps item with the money.

Any word from Lowell on his item?
Mundus vult decipi -per Caleb Carr's story Killing Time

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Bill Marquardt
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Re: About the copyright of conjuring publication

Postby Bill Marquardt » December 8th, 2015, 11:10 am

I have mentioned this before, but I repeat. An associate of mine was distributing (not selling) copies of screenplays in digital format on a web site. She was sued for more than a million dollars for copyright infringement by a major studio even though the movies had already been shown in theaters, some of them many years ago. I do not know if all the screenplays in question had registered copyrights or not. In the complaint they listed several that had been registered and claimed infringement for each one individually. The case was settled out of court, specifics unannounced to the public.

This was a show of force by a big bucks studio to discourage the practice of illegal copying. I doubt that many magicians have the financial clout to pursue such actions, but it does happen in the real world.

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Re: About the copyright of conjuring publication

Postby Jonathan Townsend » December 8th, 2015, 11:27 am

Bill Marquardt wrote:...This was a show of force by a big bucks studio to ... in the real world.


yeah might makes its own right of a sort.

Arguments about derivative works and fixed expression are expen$ive
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performer
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Re: About the copyright of conjuring publication

Postby performer » December 8th, 2015, 12:22 pm

Why not complain to e-bay about copyright violation? Do they listen to such complaints? I presume they have some sort of policy to deal with it.

Bill Mullins
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Re: About the copyright of conjuring publication

Postby Bill Mullins » December 8th, 2015, 12:52 pm

Ebay has a process to deal with things like this, but the complaint has to come from the copyright holder.

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Re: About the copyright of conjuring publication

Postby Jonathan Townsend » December 8th, 2015, 1:12 pm

performer wrote:Why not complain to e-bay about copyright violation? Do they...



Who? The OP?

Already posted to that process - he could have emailed Lowell about the auction... right from ebaY.

The rest is typing practice. Mavis Beacon rulz!
Mundus vult decipi -per Caleb Carr's story Killing Time

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Brad Jeffers
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Re: About the copyright of conjuring publication

Postby Brad Jeffers » December 8th, 2015, 4:23 pm

Is THIS the Ebay item in question?

If so, it is a CD-ROM of the original book.

This version says, "Digitally Mastered and Produced by R.F. Valdez / Copyright 2006 Magic City Inc", and can be found for sale HERE, on the Magic City website; as well as from several reputable dealers.

There is nothing wrong with the sale of this item.

I can find no Ebay listing of printed copies from this CD-ROM being sold.

Lawrence Lee
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Re: About the copyright of conjuring publication

Postby Lawrence Lee » December 8th, 2015, 6:47 pm

This is the link: http://m.ebay.com.au/itm/262147305181?e ... mwBanner=1\n

He is an US seller, I don't know why it's on the Australian eBay website. Now it is listed as unsold, hope he won't list it out again. However, his answer towards copyright matter is as aggressive and ignorant as you can ever imagine. I doubt if there are other pirated items among what he is selling.

"Dear a.lawr2,He is well aware that this is being sold everywhere on the web. Damages, make me laugh. What actual damages? Give me a break! $20.00 dollars..... you have way too much time on your hands. Get a job! You are a meddling small time lawyer who interferes in or busy oneself unduly with something that is not one's concern.-- rrath"
I really hope he is only a normal business dealer who happens to sell magic stuff. Instead of an actual magician! I also hope Morotta or Lovell could response it soon. Just like what Teller did with his 'Shadow', we need to fight back, and transfer our concerns to those "YouTube" or "eBay" users' concerns, or even their nightmares.
However, the legal action should be the last resort, not the first. And sometimes, even if we know without even the slightly doubt that our rights have been infringed. Maybe there is a pitfall in the current law or it is unpractical to sue them because of the money and energy consuming. Maybe, just maybe, the best solution is do not issue the e-book version at the first place. Re-selling a PDF is not like coping an actual book, there is no creating cost involved. And if the page count of the PDF is relatively low, those thieves may even print it out and sell it at a higher price. Even you do not having anything against e-book, you will have to admit that it can not bring the same feelings and enjoyments as reading an actual book made from paper. Yes, e-books are more affordable and easy to carry around. And many actual books are long out of print and hard to find. But maybe we can issue the e-books via an online archived database. You can view it on your devices, or even print out a page or two for the reference purpose. But you can never download the whole file. If you want to view it offline, you can use an app like iGenii. I know it is easy by describing it compare actual trying to accomplish it. Just giving you something to think about.

Larry Barnowsky
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Re: About the copyright of conjuring publication

Postby Larry Barnowsky » April 13th, 2016, 6:19 pm

The moment you complete a work whether it is a book or a piece of music and have some form of hard copy or method of saving it, it is copyrighted to you. Just state its copyrighted material with the little "c" symbol. I do not believe it has to be actually published or for sale. Registering it gives you of additional proof and advantages if you have to go to court to enforce your copyright claim. I've registered a copyright for 6 books that I've written on magic and many musical works.

Registering a copyright at the ECO site of the Library of Congress can be done on line. Its $35 or $55 depending on factors such as additional claimants like photographers and artists who contribute to the work. Unless it's an ebook, you must send them usually two copies of the work.

Here is a link to the site with some FAQs
http://www.copyright.gov/eco/help/

Larry
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