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On 6/24/2014 3:22 PM, Stephen Rice wrote:
> Since there was no copyright registered in the US, I am virtually
> certain it is in the public domain here as well:

In all Berne convention countries, including the US, there is NO
requirement whatsoever to take any proactive action, such as
registration, to have copyrights to a work. One need only put it in
some fixed form. It doesn't need to be published or anything.

Registration is useful only for some commercial litigation
considerations. It is not at all necessary to have copyright.


On Tue, Jun 24, 2014 at 10:52 PM, Paul Bartlett <[log in to unmask]> wrote:
> I suppose that that might be the case, although it might take an opinion
> from an intellectual property attorney to be comfortable. (One such law firm
> occasionally sponsors programming on a public radio station in my area, but
> I have no idea what their fees might be.)

Our pro bono offer is from a large law firm that has IP attorneys.

> For example, I suppose, the "Interlingua-English Dictionary" and
> "Interlingua Grammar" (second edition)

For natlangs, dictionaries only have copyright to the extent that the
translation is a creative work. If it has just one obvious
translation, then that's not copyrightable.

It is an open question whether this is different for a conlang.

The grammar *book* is definitely copyrightable. It's an open question
whether the *content* is protectable.


Getting into changes in copyright law / terms and pre-Berne works is,
well, complicated. Is there any specific reason to justify our asking
a question about that to our lawyers?

> Another question that comes up is materials placed online. If, for example,
> "Sona" is public domain in Canada and the US, and I place it on a server in
> the US but the copy is available to anyone in the world with an internet
> connection, am I infringing copyright somewhere, even if not in my home
> country? The internet environment seems to be turning some intellectual
> property rights issues on their head.

Depends on whether the law in a country allows extraterritorial jurisdiction.

The UK, for instance, is known as a "libel tourism" country for
exactly this reason.

Enforcing the judgment, however, would be very difficult unless you
have actual contact / dealings in the country in question. You can't
e.g. enforce a violation of UK law that does not violate US law (or
more strongly, that is protected by US constitutional rights) in the
US.

Plus there are alllllll sorts of crazy things that come in with
international law, like whether the person being sued has the right to
be sued in their home jurisdiction.

IANAL, IANYL, TINLA, and I really doubt this is likely to be relevant
to anyone hereā€¦

- Sai