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SUPPLY CHAIN SECURITY IS IMPORTANT

Remember that your business is only as secure as you make it. These things happen every day, and you are not paranoid for worrying about them.

https://www.bloomberg.com/news/features/2018-10-04/the-big-hack-how-china-used-a-tiny-chip-to-infiltrate-america-s-top-companies

TRANSFORMATION OR THEFT?

Love it or hate it (I’m in the later group) we can all agree that Lichtenstein was a lightning rod for IP issues.

Note that, in my professional opinion, these pieces do not satisfy the transformative quality test. But in the US, well-educated, white artists — who can afford expensive attorneys, get to make arguments like these:

“Comparing the source for Whaam! with the finished painting banishes the hoary idea that Lichtenstein profited on the back of the creativity of others. Lichtenstein transformed Novick’s artwork in a number of subtle but crucial ways. In general, he wanted to simplify and unify the image, to give it more clarity as a coherent work of art. For this reason, he removed two extra fighter jets to the right of the original panel. He also got rid of the lump of dark shadow representing a mountainside that was an ugly compositional mistake to the left of Novick’s picture. The result is that the two panels of Whaam! feel much more evenly balanced, producing a satisfying and well-structured visual effect.

While Novick’s explosion is a measly, scratchy little thing slipping out of frame, Lichtenstein’s self-possessed fireball unfurls like a blooming flower. Lichtenstein changed the colour of the letters spelling out “WHAAM!” from red to yellow, so that yellow would become another means of yoking everything together. As a result, the eye is cleverly led from the yellow of the speech bubble above the jet through the onomatopoeic sound effect to the explosion itself and back round to the horizontal vapour trail left behind by the missile.”

https://www.cbr.com/roy-lichtenstein-kirby-heath-novick-ab…/

MARIJUANA AND THE IRS

For those of my clients investing in (or operating) a dispensary businesses, be careful. The 10th circuit has ruled that many common business tax deductions are not applicable to what they see as drug trafficking, illegal under federal law. See the linked ruling: https://www.ca10.uscourts.gov/opinions/17/17-1223.pdf

1927 LAW UPHELD OVER NLRA

Well this is … probably the right legal outcome, but awful for workers’ rights. Note Ginsburg’s exhortation to congress urging them to pass a legislative fix.

1927 LAW UPHELD OVER NLRA

FAMOUS LAST WORDS (OR: DISNEY WOULD NEVER SUE ME!)

I’m aghast at this. The gentleman in question is quoted, ” … it’s not against the law, it’s just against the rules…”. Perhaps he might have sought an attorney’s opinion before filming his movie in Disney World, using Disney’s intellectual property….

We shot a movie in Disney World without permission. What could go wrong?

CONFIDENTIALITY CLAUSES

Here’s a fun one for your Friday afternoon. This is a clause from an agreement with a large media company:

NEWSWORTHY INFORMATION. Notwithstanding any other provision of this Agreement, any disclosure by XXXXX or Affiliates of Confidential Information in the ordinary course of their business of disseminating news and information is not a breach of this Article; provided that the individuals involved in such dissemination received such Confidential Information from a source other than the Personnel of XXXX involved in the applicable SOW.”

Bottom line? They may violate the confidential provisions of the agreement if they think some of your confidential information is “newsworthy”. And before you say, “AHA! They may not receive it from anyone involved in the project!”, just remember that there are strong protections in place to protect confidential sources.

Our press protections are a double-edged sword. I would never advocate doing away with them or limiting them in any way – but be aware that unscrupulous actors will abuse both the protections afforded the press, and contract language. 😉

PATENT TROLLS BEWARE!

Excellent intellectual property news from the Supreme Court today! The hope is that this will cut down on the forum shopping that has traditionally been accomplished in favor of patent trolls. Read more about it here!

FREELANCE ISN’T FREE!

Great news for freelancers in NY! New requirements went into effect yesterday that offer significant protections for freelance workers. I’d love to see this promulgated across the US! Click here for more details.

NON-COMPETITION AGREEMENTS = EVIL

I know many of you have signed up to non-competition terms in the past. Let this article serve as an important reminder that any non-competition agreements you sign should be limited in i) time [generally one year], ii) location [a 10 mile radius is generally sufficient], and iii) market [only named entities or a very specific market should be limited]. Moreover, you absolutely MUST make sure your noncompete is null and void if you are let go by your employer.

TO WHOM DO I LEAVE MY LITTLE RED CORVETTE?

Whether you are a creative or not, please consider some estate planning – or even just a basic will.  Read about the issues with PRINCE’s estate here: http://www.hollywoodreporter.com/news/lessons-princes-lawyer-know-what-your-work-is-worth-997038