How JustAnswer Works:

  • Ask an Expert
    Experts are full of valuable knowledge and are ready to help with any question. Credentials confirmed by a Fortune 500 verification firm.
  • Get a Professional Answer
    Via email, text message, or notification as you wait on our site.
    Ask follow up questions if you need to.
  • 100% Satisfaction Guarantee
    Rate the answer you receive.

Ask BizIPEsq. Your Own Question

BizIPEsq.
BizIPEsq., Attorney
Category: Intellectual Property Law
Satisfied Customers: 996
Experience:  I am a tech attorney and I represent clients with technology, internet and intellectual property matters
Type Your Intellectual Property Law Question Here...
BizIPEsq. is online now
A new question is answered every 9 seconds

Hello... My name isXXXXX and i specialize in making

Resolved Question:

Hello...

My name isXXXXX and i specialize in making custom shadow box action hero frames.

I take a shadow box anf take an ALREADY PAID FOR action figure...(DC Action figure, DISNEY Action Figure, HORROR Action figure, CARTOON Action figure...etc)...take comics of said action figure and take comic book cut outs of said action figure...and place these all in a shadow box frame and sell these frames or raffle them off....am I in danger of copyright infrindgement of these characters....?

I am taking my personal belongings and putting them arrangened in a frame and selling them can I be sued by the owner of the character?
Submitted: 1 year ago.
Category: Intellectual Property Law
Expert:  BizIPEsq. replied 1 year ago.

BizIPEsq. :

Hello, I will be assisting you

BizIPEsq. :

Let me review the question. Please bear with me

Customer:

Thank you

BizIPEsq. :

This is a very interesting question because it stands in the intersection of the first sale doctrine and copyright law. Let me explain

Customer:

thank you....everyone I contact wants a legal document that states it is ok to display/sell/raffle my shadow boxes.....I have paid honstly for all materials...I am taking my personal collection and organizing it into a frame and selling it

BizIPEsq. :

Under the first sale doctrine you have the right to sell stuff that you own provided you purchased the stuff legally and the stuff is legit (i.e. not counterfeit)

Customer:

whats the difference If I collect pepsi cans from all decades make a statue and raffle the statue?

Customer:

Yes all materials are original, all legally purchased

BizIPEsq. :

under copyright law a copyright owner has the exclusive right to create derivative work. The legal question is whether putting the figures in a shadow box + other elements creates a derivative work or is it just selling stuff that you own

Customer:

can you assist me with the answer to that question?

BizIPEsq. :

that's what I am trying to do please bear with me

Customer:

thank you

BizIPEsq. :

most times in the law there is no definitive answer. there are no bright line rules of what can and cannot be done. It's all about shades of gray...

Customer:

I am trying to be very legitimate in this....when people see these frames they think its professionally done....and i say yes I am a professional.....they are really nice at this point its friends and family but this has huge potential and I want to be sure all my ends are covered

Customer:

should i keep this to family in friends or pursue the avenue of being legitimate for commercial sales?

BizIPEsq. :

in your case your reasonable position is that you are NOT creating copyright derivative work. Rather you are selling your stuff inside a frame...

BizIPEsq. :

kudos to you for being thoughtful and concerned about doing the right thing!

Customer:

i have been encountering alot of road blocks

Customer:

and I say I am taking my toys from the closet..putting it in a frame and selling it

Customer:

and then everyone is like ...seems OK....but when they see the frame....it just looks so professional they think I am shady

BizIPEsq. :

your position that these are things you own that you just put inside a frame is a reasonable one. No one can give an absolute assurance that Disney may decide that they don't like what you are doing and go after you. There is always that chance. I would not be doing you any good if ignores this possibility

Customer:

so is there a law number that I can reference for my personal education?

Customer:

i understand...but really...a billion dollar corp...to come after a man trying to make a dollar?

BizIPEsq. :

as noted there are no law number and no bright line rules. There are doctrines that give use some guidance but every case is judged individually

BizIPEsq. :

as noted one is the "first sale doctrine"

BizIPEsq. :

the other one is "copyright derivative work"

Customer:

thank you for your assistance...

Customer:

i really appreciate it

BizIPEsq. :

I agree a billion dollar corp probably won't come after you. But I have to provide this warning and then it's a business decision that you make

BizIPEsq. :

you are welcome

BizIPEsq. :

please rate my answer

BizIPEsq. :

without your rating I do not get compensated for my work

Customer:

will do

Customer:

how do i rate?

BizIPEsq. :

the button is below

BizIPEsq. :

excellent will be awesome

BizIPEsq., Attorney
Satisfied Customers: 996
Experience: I am a tech attorney and I represent clients with technology, internet and intellectual property matters
BizIPEsq. and other Intellectual Property Law Specialists are ready to help you

JustAnswer in the News:

 
 
 
Ask-a-doc Web sites: If you've got a quick question, you can try to get an answer from sites that say they have various specialists on hand to give quick answers... Justanswer.com.
JustAnswer.com...has seen a spike since October in legal questions from readers about layoffs, unemployment and severance.
Web sites like justanswer.com/legal
...leave nothing to chance.
Traffic on JustAnswer rose 14 percent...and had nearly 400,000 page views in 30 days...inquiries related to stress, high blood pressure, drinking and heart pain jumped 33 percent.
Tory Johnson, GMA Workplace Contributor, discusses work-from-home jobs, such as JustAnswer in which verified Experts answer people’s questions.
I will tell you that...the things you have to go through to be an Expert are quite rigorous.
 
 
 

What Customers are Saying:

 
 
 
  • Mr. Kaplun clearly had an exceptional understanding of the issue and was able to explain it concisely. I would recommend JustAnswer to anyone. Great service that lives up to its promises! Gary B. Edmond, OK
< Last | Next >
  • Mr. Kaplun clearly had an exceptional understanding of the issue and was able to explain it concisely. I would recommend JustAnswer to anyone. Great service that lives up to its promises! Gary B. Edmond, OK
  • My Expert was fast and seemed to have the answer to my taser question at the tips of her fingers. Communication was excellent. I left feeling confident in her answer. Eric Redwood City, CA
  • I am very pleased with JustAnswer as a place to go for divorce or criminal law knowledge and insight. Michael Wichita, KS
  • PaulMJD helped me with questions I had regarding an urgent legal matter. His answers were excellent. Three H. Houston, TX
  • Anne was extremely helpful. Her information put me in the right direction for action that kept me legal, possible saving me a ton of money in the future. Thank you again, Anne!! Elaine Atlanta, GA
  • It worked great. I had the facts and I presented them to my ex-landlord and she folded and returned my deposit. The 50 bucks I spent with you solved my problem. Tony Apopka, FL
  • Wonderful service, prompt, efficient, and accurate. Couldn't have asked for more. I cannot thank you enough for your help. Mary C. Freshfield, Liverpool, UK
 
 
 

Meet The Experts:

 
 
 
  • Alex Reese

    Lawyer

    Satisfied Customers:

    2588
    Experienced in intellectual property law
< Last | Next >
  • http://ww2.justanswer.com/uploads/sosolid007/2010-08-05_070536_Suitpic.jpg Alex Reese's Avatar

    Alex Reese

    Lawyer

    Satisfied Customers:

    2588
    Experienced in intellectual property law
  • http://ww2.justanswer.com/uploads/scottymacesq/2009-6-10_221523_small.jpg Robert McEwen, Esq.'s Avatar

    Robert McEwen, Esq.

    Lawyer

    Satisfied Customers:

    387
    Licensed Texas General Practice Attorney
  • http://ww2.justanswer.com/uploads/tswartz123/2010-02-08_225658_Tommy.jpg Thomas Swartz's Avatar

    Thomas Swartz

    Lawyer

    Satisfied Customers:

    374
    Twenty one years experience as a lawyer in New York and New Jersey. Former Appellate Law Clerk.
  • http://ww2.justanswer.com/uploads/dkaplun/2009-05-17_173121_headshot_1_2.jpg Dimitry K., Esq.'s Avatar

    Dimitry K., Esq.

    Attorney

    Satisfied Customers:

    371
    I assist my clients with IP questions that arise in their daily course of doing business.
  • http://ww2.justanswer.com/uploads/personwilt/2010-1-10_164828_person1.jpg Wilton A. Person's Avatar

    Wilton A. Person

    Lawyer

    Satisfied Customers:

    339
    MBA, Experienced and Knowledgeable in Intellectual Property Law
  • http://ww2.justanswer.com/uploads/BA/bart0358/2012-1-23_232424_1056.64x64.JPG BartEsq's Avatar

    BartEsq

    Researcher

    Satisfied Customers:

    192
    Juris Doctor
  • http://ww2.justanswer.com/uploads/IP/ipesq/2012-1-9_164431_RetouchPortraitHighResCopy.64x64.jpg ipesq's Avatar

    ipesq

    Lawyer

    Satisfied Customers:

    134
    Specializing in patent prosecution, trademark and copyright registration/enforcement.