Broken Arrow, OK asked in Copyright for Oklahoma

Q: Copyright Infringement. I am an Etsy seller, I was contacted by another shop claiming to own a copyright.

The other Etsy owner has a copyright titled "Bathroom Rules" and has been contacting any Etsy seller with a listing with the same title. I was told that she could only copyright her overall image, because the list is made of up of common phrases such as "hang up your towel" or "wash your hands". Our list is not at all similar in look, and the phrases are not in the same order. She actually uses many phrases I do not. She is threatening to sue, does she have a leg to stand on?

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1 Lawyer Answer
Mr. Michael O. Stevens
Mr. Michael O. Stevens
  • Intellectual Property Lawyer
  • Hillsboro, OR

A: First, she would have to have already registered the work. You might ask her for a copy of the registration so you can see how close it is. Likely she has not registered, but if she has, then sit down with a local copyright attorney to examine how close the works are.

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