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New York Entertainment / Sports Questions & Answers

2 Answers | Asked in Business Formation, Entertainment / Sports and Intellectual Property for New York on

Q: As a musician who intends to perform independently under the gov legal name, what should I do first to protect my work?

I intend to begin performing on the stage as well as sell my music and other media content via digital platforms: all under my name. On the longer run I intend to establish a company that will be specializing in producing media content, managing artists performances (primarily as a booking agency),... Read more »

Michael David Siegel answered on Jun 11, 2019

What is "gov legal name"? Do you mean your name? You actually need to trademark your name. While it seems odd, if your name is a brand, you need to protect it. Whether you incorporate at this point or not (and it generally is beneficial to do so), if your name will be the name of the... Read more »

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3 Answers | Asked in Contracts and Entertainment / Sports for New York on

Q: I am suing a venue for an event I had produced. I live in Queens, do I file in Queens or Fishkill?

Michael David Siegel answered on Feb 28, 2019

I always recommend suing where the defendant is located. It saves a step in enforcing the judgment.

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1 Answer | Asked in Copyright, Entertainment / Sports, Intellectual Property and Trademark for New York on

Q: Want to get the rights to use music from an old TV show in a short film I am making. I believe it's owned by CBS.

The music is from two 1961 episodes of The Twilight Zone that were scored by composer Jerry Goldsmith. How would I go about getting the rights to use that music in a short film I am working on? Would this even be possible? Any idea of what it would cost? Thanks!

Ali Shahrestani, Esq. answered on Jan 2, 2019

See my reply to your same question posted in the CA section of this forum. A license from the copyright owner would be required if you don't qualify under the "Fair Use" exceptions. More details are necessary to provide a professional analysis of your issue. The best first step is an Initial... Read more »

1 Answer | Asked in Entertainment / Sports for New York on

Q: Is there a law that governs college scholarship contract provisions regarding behavior or conduct outside of athletics?

What can a team prevent athletes from doing on their own time?

Gregory J. Tarone answered on Jul 21, 2018

Yes, and no, and to a certain extent it depends on the institution providing the scholarship and what the rule is. There is no specific "law" for it. That is, no state or federal statutes that apply. Scholarships are contracts governing the rights of the parties -- and that is where you begin to... Read more »

1 Answer | Asked in Copyright and Entertainment / Sports for New York on

Q: Is it possible to use fictional characters from tv shows in music under transformative usage?

Like an empathic autobiography.

Benton R Patterson III answered on May 14, 2018

In theory, yes it is possible. An attorney would need to know more about the work to give an opinion on whether the particular use is transformative.

1 Answer | Asked in Entertainment / Sports for New York on

Q: Can a high school athlete hire an agent to represent them in choosing a college?

Gregory J. Tarone answered on May 8, 2018

Yes, but then he or she loses all amateur eligibility to compete in NCAA and other organizations' athletics, but not necessarily the Olympics. An amateur athlete cannot have an agent. It is entirely legitimate to engage the services of a lawyer on a fee basis for legal advice and guidance, but... Read more »

1 Answer | Asked in Entertainment / Sports for New York on

Q: What rules apply to promoting products on social media?

Carrie A. Ward answered on Mar 15, 2018

The FTC guidelines for endorsements govern promoting products on social media. The guides are specific, but in general you need to make it clear that any “mentions” on social media are paid advertisements. There are are many ways that this can be accomplished. An attorney experienced in... Read more »

1 Answer | Asked in Entertainment / Sports and Gaming for New York on

Q: Is it considered gambling for players to put monetary wagers on skill based games?

If 2 players decided to make a bet on which one of them was better in a skill based video game (online chess or League of Legends) is it considered gambling even though none of the results are controlled by luck?

Carrie A. Ward answered on Feb 25, 2018

It is illegal when there are 3 elements present in the contest: (1) prize; (2) chance; and (3) consideration. In the scenario you describe above, the element of chance is missing in the equation.

1 Answer | Asked in Copyright, Business Law and Entertainment / Sports for New York on

Q: hello please i need advice on what to do i do photography and videography and couple months ago i did a reality show

video recording and took photographs for a popular basketballer and i was there the whole day with him and at the end of my work with him he didn't pay me for all the work i did for him and he took with him all the photos and recordings i did for him and he insisted of not paying me because he... Read more »

Michael David Siegel answered on Jan 29, 2018

You can sue. An oral contract is enforceable. It is just harder to prove. Here you have the commercial use.

1 Answer | Asked in Personal Injury, Entertainment / Sports and Libel & Slander for New York on

Q: I want to share a life story on YouTube that doesn’t paint people in the best light. Can they sue me?

I want to share a story in a vlog on my YouTube channel about what I’ve been through in the last few months. My brother and his wife are part of the story. I do not identify them in any other way, other than saying my brother and his wife. Can they sue me for talking about them on my channel and... Read more »

Mr. Beau Correll answered on Jan 7, 2018

If you are that worried about it, you should probably consult with a defamation attorney in advance and have them vet your statement.

1 Answer | Asked in Entertainment / Sports for New York on

Q: Does my band need to have an internal band contract? Should we consult with an attorney about that?

Jonathan Bradford Ripps answered on Nov 17, 2017

Hi - you need to think of your band as being similar to a marriage. If there are assets (equipment, recording contract or incoming revenue streams), and there is a breakup, there are going to be disputes on how the assets will be split up. If you are in that position, congrats! That indicates that... Read more »

2 Answers | Asked in Entertainment / Sports, Intellectual Property and Trademark for New York on

Q: What release forms do I need?

I just finished shooting a video with my friend and we're both minors. What release forms do I need and how/where can I get them?

Ali Shahrestani, Esq. answered on Aug 13, 2017

You may need a lawyer to draft such documents so that they're tailored to your needs. If you're a minor, then a parent may need to hire the lawyer for you. More details are necessary to provide a professional analysis of your issue. The best first step is an Initial Consultation with an Attorney... Read more »

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1 Answer | Asked in Entertainment / Sports, Intellectual Property and Trademark for New York on

Q: What should I say to successfully obtain the rights for an abandoned/dead mark from the original trademark registrants?

I ran a search in TESS for a stage name that I would like to use and came across a DEAD (since 2007) trademark for it under the IC 009 category. They were using it for a "series of musical recordings..." which is what I would like to use it for.

I have found the contact information for the... Read more »

Benton R Patterson III answered on Aug 7, 2017

You probably do not need anything from the original owner if the mark expired 10 years ago. Once a trademark expires, the registration terminates. The former owner no longer owns a federal registration. Although, there could be some other common law rights to the mark. To be certain the mark is... Read more »

1 Answer | Asked in Business Law, Entertainment / Sports, Intellectual Property and Internet Law for New York on

Q: is public access tv considered public domain?

i wanna post a rare interview from a public access tv show from the early '90's onto my YouTube channel but don't wanna get my channel deleted

Barry Eran Janay answered on Aug 7, 2017

Probably not, contact the shows producers and ask for permission / a license.

1 Answer | Asked in Contracts and Entertainment / Sports for New York on

Q: Can I collect a finders fee as a "Consultant" for introducing an investor to a producer for an animated tv series in NY?

New York governance in the agreement

Robert Philip Cogan answered on Aug 3, 2017

If the introduction has not been made yet, a Finder's Fee Agreement is a good way to protect the consultant. There are formulas that are recognized as appropriate for determining the amount to pay the consultant.

If the introduction has already been made, it is necessary to consider these...
Read more »

1 Answer | Asked in Entertainment / Sports for New York on

Q: Filming a doc,got an appearance release form signed, but he refuses to sign a location release,can I use any footage?

Hello, I hired some people to film an interview for my documentary, the footage is in the can. I got the interviewee to sign an appearance release but he refuses to sign a location release. He is basically holding the film hostage. -How important is the location release for a documentary,... Read more »

Ali Shahrestani, Esq. answered on Aug 2, 2017

If you use it without the location release, you may be inviting a lawsuit. More details are necessary to provide a professional analysis of your issue. The best first step is an Initial Consultation with an Attorney such as myself. You can read more about me, my credentials, awards, honors,... Read more »

1 Answer | Asked in Entertainment / Sports for New York on

Q: My sixteen year old daughter signed a modeling contract without my consent. Is it legally binding, even if she's not 18?

Ali Shahrestani, Esq. answered on Jul 26, 2017

A minor cannot consent to a contract, except for necessities. You may seek to rescind it. More details are necessary to provide a professional analysis of your issue. The best first step is an Initial Consultation with an Attorney such as myself. You can read more about me, my credentials, awards,... Read more »

2 Answers | Asked in Entertainment / Sports, Intellectual Property and Trademark for New York on

Q: How would I successfully go about obtaining a stage name, that was filed/abandoned (is DEAD) 10+ years ago?

I ran a search in TESS for the stage name that I would like to use and came across a DEAD trademark under the IC 009 category. They were using it for a "series of musical recordings..." which is what I'd like to use it for, however it was filed in March 2006, and abandoned in April 2007. How can I... Read more »

Donovan A Rodriques answered on Jul 25, 2017

You will need to conduct a search to see if the mark is still in use. A trademark may be still valid at common law despite being listed as "dead" at the USPTO. If the mark is in use you may contact the owner for permission to use it, via a transfer of rights or trademark license. If the mark is not... Read more »

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2 Answers | Asked in Copyright, Business Law, Entertainment / Sports and Intellectual Property for New York on

Q: Copyright reg: does 'authorship on appl' for 'entire work' protect music and vocals in a motion picture live recording?

I received the answer to my question so thank you.

Michael David Siegel answered on Jun 27, 2017

You need to copyright the individual songs. What you did covers the video, but not the songs re-done on an album.

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1 Answer | Asked in Entertainment / Sports for New York on

Q: A group of friends are developing a video game - what's the best way to make sure we all get credit if we sell it?

Ali Shahrestani, Esq. answered on Jun 25, 2017

You should hire a lawyer to draft a partnership agreement and IP agreement. An ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure, said Ben Franklin -- and with good reason! More details are necessary to provide a professional analysis of your issue. The best first step is an Initial Consultation with an... Read more »

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