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How Do I Qualify for and Obtain Copyrigh... > Ensuring Company Ownership of Copyri... - Pg. 142

A Primer on Intellectual Property 1. 142 2. 3. The work must be fixed in a tangible medium from which the work can be retrieved (for ex- ample, a composition can be written or recorded, a computer program can be printed out or saved to disk). The work must be original (created by the author). Note that original does not mean innovative, groundbreaking, unique, or worthy of note. Simply, something new. The work must contain some level of creativity. Again, the bar is quite low: software docu- mentation is considered creative enough to fit this criteria. Works qualifying for copyright protection include almost every tangible, fixed expression of an idea with even a modicum of innovation. Aside from the more familiar realms like artistic works and computer programs, copyrights can protect seemingly un-creative works like sound effects and business documents like design and technical specifications, software documentation, budgets, and so forth. Finally, consider federal registration of the copyright, which will provide you with maximum protection of your assets. Figure 5.3. The Resident Evil property has spawnedmany derivative copyrights, shown in Figures5.4 through 5.6. Ensuring Company Ownership of Copyrights Before a company thinks about protecting its copyrights, it needs to make sure that it owns them. The Copyright Act grants certain rights to the creator of a work, and an employer must be careful to structure its relationships with the creators (employees and contractors) for smooth transfer of all ownership rights to the employer. Note NOTE Droit Morale.Some countries and a fewjurisdictions in the U.S. give authors"moral rights" to prevent any modification, distortion, or mutilation of theirwork that would be prejudicial to theauthor's honor or reputation (can youtell this idea originated in France?),even after it has been assigned. Be surethat these rights are waived in allassignment and license agree- ments. Employees