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Gary K. Marshall
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Gary Marshall’s Answers

106 total


  • Do music publishers make money from every track on an album?

    Is it all tracks or just the singles that are released?

    Gary’s Answer

    That is a very broad question.

    For every record (in any format) that is released there must be a license payment to the owner of the publishing rights in each song. There is a mandatory license fee in the copyright law, although parties are free to make their own arrangements instead.

    There is usually but not always a payment to the artist who recorded the song. There is sometimes a payment to the producer of the record. There are occasionally other payment arrangements as well.

    When the song is performed live in front of an audience or broadcast on TV, radio or the Internet, there is a licensing fee that needs to be paid to the owner of the publishing rights. In the United States, most publishers are represented by one of three organization for purposes of collecting theses fees. The organizations are ASCAP, BMI and SESAC.

    Does that answer your question?

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  • A competitor is "stealing" credit, and my pictures, for my lighting designs. He claims that they are "HIS" but cannot supply.

    I have spent dozens of hours to design several lighting products. I am not a large manufacturer and do these one at a time. I made the molds, I cast the metal, I do it all. I put these new designs on my web site with pictures. A competitor the...

    Gary’s Answer

    You may have a claim for copyright infringement and/or unfair competition. You may want to check out my article “Legal Issues for Online Sellers” available for free download at http://www.marshallcomputer.com/resources.html.

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  • My ex & me made porn video. She really enjoyed and have been watching them. I've posted them on web is it illegal. They were min

    She was particularly posing for the video

    Gary’s Answer

    The fact that you own the physical copy of the video does not by itself give you any rights. The answer to your question depends on the facts of the case. What was the agreement between the two of you regarding the use of the video? Did she explicitly give you permission to show it to others? Usually in the case of private sex videos there is an implied understanding that the video will stay private. Given the sensitive nature of the tape, you will find that judges will tend to side with her if there is any ambiguity.

    As to whether it is illegal? There are two aspects to that. One, can she sue you for damages? Unless you can show you had her permission to post the video, she probably can. Two, have you committed a crime? There are several anti-harassment statutes in Washington, including ones that deal with Internet based harassment. Did you set out to harass her? If so, then yes you may be guilty of a crime.

    As a practical matter, why would you want to post the video without her permission? You know that makes you look like a scumbag. Is that how you want other people, especially women, to think of you?

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  • Is it a violation of privacy laws if a supervisor posts in a public place production statistics with the employee full names?

    The production statistics used to be posted with color codes and each employee was told their "color". This process kept each employee's statistics confidential. Now he posts them in a hallway with the names on them where anyone outside our imme...

    Gary’s Answer

    No, you have no reasonable expectation of privacy about your work performance. I can not think of any other legal principle that it violates either. It may sound harsh, but you are free to quit if you do not like the new policy.

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  • Can i trademark or copyright the name of a sauce i have developed and plan on bringing onto the market?

    i have a sauce name that i would like to have copyrighted also the recipe is that possible?

    Gary’s Answer

    You can not claim copyright protection for names. You may be able to obtain trademark protection. Recipes are hard to protect. You can not copyright the underlying concepts and ideas, but you can protect your creative expression, which is the way you describe the recipe. That is a difficult line to draw, even for experienced attorneys. If you want to pursue this further you need to talk to an attorney.

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  • Is it illegal in the State of Washington to Blackmail a person?

    If it is a crime how do I prove it and what is the punishment for it?

    Gary’s Answer

    In Washington it is illegal knowingly to obtain or attempt to obtain by threat property or services of the owner. See RCW 9A.56.110. Extortion and blackmail are closely related topics. There is no clear definition of the difference, but a common distinction made is that blackmail is a form of extortion that threatens to reveal embarrassing, disgraceful or damaging information about a person to the public, family, spouse or associates unless money is paid to purchase silence.

    RCW 9A.56.120 Extortion in the first degree.-
    (1) A person is guilty of extortion in the first degree if he or she commits extortion by means of a threat as defined in RCW 9A.04.110(27) (a), (b), or (c).
    (2) Extortion in the first degree is a class B felony.

    RCW 9A.56.130 Extortion in the second degree.-
    (1) A person is guilty of extortion in the second degree if he or she commits extortion by means of a wrongful threat as defined in *RCW 9A.04.110(25) (d) through (j)
    (2) In any prosecution under this section based on a threat to accuse any person of a crime or cause criminal charges to be instituted against any person, it is a defense that the actor reasonably believed the threatened criminal charge to be true and that his or her sole purpose was to compel or induce the person threatened to take reasonable action to make good the wrong which was the subject of such threatened criminal charge.
    (3) Extortion in the second degree is a class C felony.

    You do not prove a criminal case, the government does. The more information you can give the government prosecutor, the more likely it is that they will take your case and will win your case. You should talk to a criminal attorney for more specific advice, or the local police or the local prosecutor’s office to determine what is specifically needed in your case.

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  • Regarding an L&I case, is it legal for someone to video tape a claimant inside a store in Washington state?

    Labor and Industries

    Gary’s Answer

    I am sorry. This is probably not what you want to hear. But ...

    The law is not that clear. And it depends on what is being recorded and under what circumstances. There is no substitution to talking with an attorney about your specific case.

    In Washington it is illegal to audio record a private conversation without the permission of everyone being recorded (RCW 9.73 Privacy, Violating Right of). But there must be some expectation of privacy. If the recording is say on a playground, then there is no expectation of privacy. Oddly, it is generally not illegal to record video only. There are some exceptions, such as when the person being recorded has some expectation of privacy.

    And there can be restrictions on how the recording is used. Defamation, invasion of privacy, false light, copyright and many other areas of law may come in to play.

    Based on what you have said, there is usually no reasonable expectation of privacy in a store, and usually no restriction on using a video taken in a public place like a store as evidence of whether you have an L&I claim.

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  • I received a subpoena to inspection of my premises because illegal downloading movie

    I did not download movie but it may have been my son or his friends.What me need to do whis this letter?Please help!

    Gary’s Answer

    • Selected as best answer

    You probably received a subpoena for your ISP to release your name and address, not to inspect your premises. I agree with John, do not concede any facts in a public forum. You should be concerned. A federal law suit for copyright infringement is a serious matter. Your situation is too complicated to discuss in this forum. If you go to the EFF.org website you can find a list of attorneys who deal with this issue. I am on that list. So is John Whitaker. Either of us would be a good choice. I have dealt with close to 100 of these cases over the last almost 3 years. Please give me a call at 206 524-0655.

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  • Can I be denied service by a retailer and/or on what grounds?

    I re-sell a national retailers' products on Amazon (I buy retail, mark up and ship to locations where the retailer is not operating). I was asked not to shop at the retailer by a store manager and by the corporate spokesperson (I called the head o...

    Gary’s Answer

    Not a simple question. The answer is rather complicated, and is very fact specific. If you want some general legal information on this subject, look at my article “Legal Issues for Online Sellers” available for free download at http://www.marshallcomputer.com/resources.html.

    I assume you are talking about territories within the United States. Under copyright law’s first sale doctrine, you have a right to buy products that are protected by copyright and resell them. But the retailer/manufacturer has a right to choose not to sell to you if they don’t want to. They do not need a reason. And Amazon has a right to kick you off of their website, for any reason or no reason at all, and they usually do kick people off their website when a manufacturer or major retailer complains to them. Under trademark law, you may be infringing on the retailer/manufacturer’s trademarks, depending upon the specific facts. And as the other attorney pointed out, if you have a contract with the company, then the terms of the contract are usually controlling. There may be other legal principles that apply as well, depending upon the specific facts.

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  • Is it illegal to record a conversation in public without the other persons concent?

    My Ex wife has a history of being verbally abusive toward me in front of our Son. We tried to have a discussion about a disagreement over our parenting plan and i recorded the conversation without her knowledge. Once again she became verbally abus...

    Gary’s Answer

    This type of question comes up often.

    The law is not that clear. And it depends on what is being recorded and under what circumstances.

    In Washington it is illegal to audio record a private conversation without the permission of everyone being recorded (RCW 9.73 Privacy, Violating Right of). But there must be some expectation of privacy.

    And there can be restrictions on how the recording is used. Defamation, invasion of privacy, false light, copyright and many other areas of law may come in to play.

    You should consult an attorney who is familiar with this area of law, such as myself, and go over the specific facts of your case with that person if you want a more definitive answer.

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