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Submission Summary: 0 pending, 2 declined, 1 accepted (3 total, 33.33% accepted)

United States

+ - Digital Models not subject to copyright 1

Submitted by MonsterMagnet
MonsterMagnet writes: The US Court of Appeals for the Tenth Circuit has affirmed a ruling that a plain, unadorned wireframe model of a Toyota vehicle is not a creative expression protected under US copyright law. The court analogized the wire-frame models to photographs: the owner of an object does not have a copyright in all images of the object, but a photographer may have a limited copyright over a particular image based on artistic choices such as costumery, lighting, posing, etc. Thus, the modelers could only copyright any "incremental contribution" they made to Toyota's vehicles; in the case of plain models, there was nothing new to protect. This could be a two-edged sword — companies that produce goods may not be able to stop modelers from imaging those products, but modelers may not be able to prevent others from copying their work.

News article; IP360 article (subscription required); the Tenth Circuit's ruling is here

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