Outsourcing Your Creative Work? Overlooking Copyright Issues Can Cause Legal Woes

Corporations today deal with an incredible number of contractual relationships. However, copyright issues and the assignment of rights are often neglected when using outside firms to create graphic design work, advertising, or to handle web development. While many top level executives understand the value of the intellectual property and copyrightable material they may create – and they work furiously to protect it – these same … [ Read more ]

Copyright Explained: I May Copy It, Right?

If you’re blogging, or even thinking about it, this is a clearly-written, concise resource on understanding copyright issues.

The Role of Regulation in Strategy

Companies have everything to gain from forging a strong link between regulation and strategy. By shifting their approach to regulation from confrontation or passive compliance to a proactive and informed dialogue with external stakeholders, they can help construct more balanced regulatory frameworks and ensure a better outcome for the organization.

12 Important U.S. Laws Every Blogger Needs to Know

While the Internet still retains some of the “wild wild west” feel, increasingly Internet activity, and particular blogging, is being shaped and governed by state and federal laws. For US bloggers in particular, blogging has become a veritable land mine of potential legal issues, and the situation isn’t helped by the fact that the law in this area is constantly in flux. In this article … [ Read more ]

Surviving Intellectual-Property Due Diligence

As IP has assumed greater strategic prominence in the boardroom, so has IP due diligence in funding and M&A activity. Part of managing diligence compliance is knowing what to expect. Cheaters ace the test by getting the questions in advance. In IP diligence, that’s not cheating – just common sense. Funders and acquirers usually focus on three primary areas. [Hat tip to Themanager.org]

Defamation vs. Negligent Referral

A policy of giving only basic employee references may lead to liability.

Editor’s Note: this is an older article (Spring 1999) so the status of some of the legal issues discussed has undoubtedly changed, but the concepts addressed are of long-lasting value…

United States: Personality Tests: Proceed With Caution

Roughly 30% of all companies, including big names like Wal*Mart and General Motors, subject their applicants and employees to some sort of personality test. Judicial decisions, however, illustrate the risks employers assume by using and relying on such tests for employment decisions. This article surveys the use of personality tests historically, their purported benefits to employers, and the potential liability associated with the tests. [BNET … [ Read more ]

Subchapter S: Some Myths, Realities and Practical Considerations

I have often had entrepreneurs tell me with great confidence that they either do or do not want to set up their venture as a Subchapter S corporation. Equally often when I ask them why they want to take that course of action I find they don’t really understand what is involved.

A Kinder, Gentler (Legal) Way of Firing

Firing an employee can be painful, emotional and, if done incorrectly, costly. Following some basic procedures and acting as a corporate humanitarian rather than a corporate assassin can help you avoid the agony of a legal battle.

Intellectual Property Due Diligence: A Critical Prerequisite to Capital Investment

A thorough due diligence involves examining not only the financial information of a company, but also the company’s key assets. For the vast majority of enterprises, this means a review of the intellectual property assets of the target company.

Towards an Integrated Theory of Intellectual Property

Abstract: This Article addresses a curious gap in the theory of intellectual property. One of the central dogmas in both the legal and economic literatures is that patents, copyrights and trademarks constitute separate forms of protection, each serving different purposes and designed to operate independently of the others. By challenging this dogma, however, this Article shows that certain combinations of intellectual property protection give … [ Read more ]

Is Google Book Search Fair Use?

Lawrence Lessig covers “Fair Use” and Google’s interpretation of it in their Book Search project. (~30 minute video)

“Going Private”: Business and Procedural Considerations…

This article discusses various business and procedural considerations relating to going private and provides an overview of some of the techniques that can be used to take a company private.

Employee Handbooks: Making Them Worth the Trouble

Some employers are afraid of handbooks. They believe that setting down rules and regulations in writing will somehow lead them into court. In fact, this may be true for some employers. An employer who does not want to act consistently, or who intends to act fairly but has ill-trained staff, may be better off without an employee handbook. This article suggest that there is no … [ Read more ]

Top 10 Tips for Managing Your Patent Portfolio

Learn critical IP strategies from Silicon Valley attorneys Michele Liu and Dennis Fernandez.

The Conundrum over Compliance with Global Privacy Laws

Privacy law compliance is hard enough stateside. But when you’re a global corporation trying to comply with a multitude of nations’ laws, you’ve got a real headache.

Learn To Love Your Lawyer

When it comes to attorneys, even the smartest business owners screw up. It doesn’t have to be that way — if you follow Inc.’s plan for managing your lawyer

The Uncertain World of Trademark Dilution

The decision in Victor’s Little Secret v. Victoria’s Secret requires that the holder of the trademark prove that a competitor’s similar trademark causes actual dilution in order to obtain an injunction against its use. However, significant questions remain.

Taking Intellectual Property Seriously

There’s more at stake in protecting and selling your IP than you may think.