Niceville, FL asked in Copyright for New York

Q: are gifs of an animated tv show protected under copyright laws?

i make gifs for a tv show that i like and i ask people not to repost them since it takes a lot of effort to make and edit. i understand that doesn't compare to the effort it takes to create the show and that i have no claim to the show. from my understanding, gifs are considered fair use, but also there aren't any cases to go into depth about this subject. would it be considered plagiarism/a copyright violation if someone were to save and repost my gif without asking and properly crediting me for making it? while i may not take legal action, I'm curious about if gifs count as a "graphic work" to be protected under copyright (via circular 1 on copyright dot gov)

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1 Lawyer Answer
Maurice Mandel II
Maurice Mandel II

A: First, don't be STUPID, just because you ask someone to not repost or resend your GIF does not put them under any obligation to comply. I don't know where you got your "understanding" about fair use, but what you say does not come within my understanding of "fair use" and IMO is probably a violation of copyright law. You are not using it for any legitimate EDUCATIONAL use, it is for entertainment, and that could constitute a violation. The shows and the GIFs are both subject to copyright protection. Cf: Comerica Bank & Trust, N.A. v. Habib and Brammer v. Violent Hues Productions, LLC. Particularly in the latter, you don't have to have a monetary reward for the posting in order to commit an infringement or fair use violation.

Look at your facts, you admit "the effort it takes to create the show and that i have no claim to the show" but you are taking the creative and artistic work and using it without a license to do so, to create your own version of an artistic work. That can be infringement.

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