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Sunday, March 25, 2012

Hunger Games and copyrights

I just went to see the Hunger Games, and it was really interesting. I can see what the "big deal" is in connection with this franchise. I think a lot of doll artists and dollmakers are going to be making Catniss dolls (as well as Gale and Peeta, and all the other interesting characters!) soon.

I even know someone who has been selling Hunger Games-inspired jewelry on Etsy. He's been making a lot of money doing it, too.

I just want to remind everyone that there are copyright laws in effect that may get you into trouble if you try to make several copies of any of these characters, whether based on the descriptions in the books, or based on the images in the movies.

Please don't rely on what other dollmakers tell you in regards to the copyright laws. Read them for yourself. It may be legal to make a single doll, but totally illegal to make copies of your own doll. Read the laws yourself, and find out.

Get the facts. Go to the website of the US Copyright Office and download their free information: http://www.copyright.gov/

You'll find the Copyright Basics in a downloadable pdf as well as Frequently Asked Questions. And there's plenty of information on recording your own copyrights for dolls you've designed yourself. Intellectual property makes the filmmakers and authors billions of dollars a year, and you'd better believe they are going to protect that property!

I mean, wouldn't you, if it was your bread and butter? Yeah. I thought so. Please be respectful of others' property, and when you create something on your own, you'll understand what I'm talking about. You may not know what it's like to see a cheap imitation of your hard work with someone else's signature. It has happened to me, and I can tell you, it's kind of shocking, and not at all nice.

Remember the Golden Rule, and don't do unto others what you wouldn't want others doing to you. What goes around comes around. (Karma)

OK, just my two cents worth. Get out there and make those fabulous dolls, and "May the odds be ever in your favor."

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