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Re: Interesting twist on intellectual property law
From: Valdis.Kletnieks () vt edu
Date: Sun, 23 Mar 2014 20:02:54 -0400

On Sat, 22 Mar 2014 12:53:36 -0700, "Rob, grandpa of Ryan, Trevor, Devon & Hannah" said:

The trick can't be protected, but the performance can. [2]

[2] - Normally I'm not on the side of IP protection, but I find this an
intriguing legal argument.

That's been baked into US copyright law since the beginning - an idea
can't be copyrighted, but an instantiation or performance can.

The murky part is deciding if a claimed infringement is based on an idea
or on a specific instance of it - you can rack up a lot of billable hours
deciding whether a story is based on a trope like "young girl treated horribly
by wicked stepmother until saved by prince", or whether you've included too
many story elements from Disney's version of Cinderella.  Similarly, you're
allowed to draw pictures of "young boy with animated stuffed animal", but
if it looks too much like Calvin and Hobbes or either the AA Milne or Disney
versions of Winnie the Pooh, you may want legal advice....

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