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San Francisco Civil Litigation Blog

Helping people defend their personality rights

People know that California is a place where many wealthy and famous people live. In addition to the celebrities who congregate particularly in the southern part of this state, there are many wealthy business people, including pioneers in the technology industry, who call the San Francisco area and other parts of Northern California their home.

As a previous post on this blog has discussed, California residents, whether they are famous or not, have the right to decide how their images, their voices, and even their names are used in public, particularly when it comes to a business trying to use one's characteristics to sell a product or service.

Overview of how appeals work in civil cases

Even if a San Francisco individual or business has a great court case and has prepared for litigation well, there is always the chance that a judge or jury may make a decision that is disappointing.

In some cases, this may just have to be chalked up to the way life goes sometimes. However, in many other situations, the reason the result is disappointing is that it really was not fair or even was contrary to established California or federal law.

Offering representation in crisis situations

Anyone who follows the San Francisco Giants or other professional baseball teams knows that, at critical moments in the game, the manager may call for a relief pitcher, a pinch hitter or make other short-term changes in the roster.

These do not necessarily mean another player did something wrong, but that, at the moment, it is what the team needs to win the game.

The danger of startups leaking their intellectual property

Young and inexperienced entrepreneurs are vulnerable to giving away valuable information. After a few drinks and mingling, you and your business partners may run off giving away information to call attention to your unique niche in the industry. Unfortunately, this may greatly hinder your professional progress.

The excitement of venturing down the path of business prosperity may cloud your attention to discretion when it comes to the details of your business. Perhaps you have a new app or social networking idea that you can’t wait to spread the word about. Innovative ideas can spark curiosity and questions that corner you in divulging more information than you should.

The Music Modernization Act takes aim at music copyrights

It’s not often you can get politicians from either side of the aisle to agree on anything. This makes the Music Modernization Act something of a miracle. All 100 state senators sponsored this bill.

The bill addresses the patchwork of copyright laws that dictate the use of music. The bill is tailored for digital streaming services such as Spotify or Pandora. It’s been hailed as a rare win-win for creators and music publishers. So, what does it try to do, exactly?

U.S. music copyright law could see a big change

Among the things that can have major economic implications for songwriters and other individuals in the music industry are copyright matters. So federal copyright law regarding music can be very impactful for these entertainment professionals. Such law could soon be changing. This is due to a bill the U.S. Senate passed last week.

The bill is called the Music Modernization Act. Among the things it would do are:

Five Crucial Practices For Protecting Intellectual Property

You have successfully developed intellectual property that sets you and your company apart in a crowded market. However, if you thought creating unique intellectual property, or IP, was the hard part, you are wrong. Now comes the real challenge: Protecting your IP from a horde of global competitors who are eager to use it for themselves.

There are several techniques that you can use to protect your IP. In this post, we will examine five of the most important.

Understanding fair use: When is it ok to use my work?

As an artist or creator, you take great pleasure in seeing the effect your work has on others. Unfortunately, there are numerous people out there who do not understand the difference between inspiration and plagiarism. When someone tries to replicate or sell your work without your permission, you can find them liable for copyright infringement and sue them for any money they have cost you.

However, not all usage of your work without permission is copyright infringement. The defendant can claim that the usage of your work was under fair use. Before you file a copyright infringement lawsuit on the supposed wrongdoer, you should learn about what California classifies as fair usage of your material and what the limitations are.

Preparing an expert witness for trial

Testifying at a trial can be stressful, even if the witness has testified before. If the jury senses the witness is unprepared, it is difficult to gain back confidence in that witness. Thorough preparation before trial may help avoid the damage an unprepared witness can inflict on your case.

The basis of testifying is to tell the truth. This may sound easy, but there are steps to follow before and while an expert witness is on the stand.

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