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Member Since 11 Apr 2011
Offline Last Active Apr 17 2014 11:12 AM

Posts I've Made

In Topic: I make that same product and your product needs to be......

19 July 2013 - 04:31 PM

It seems the thrust of the comment is that you can't trust the critques of people in the same business.  This is not quite correct.  You can trust the critiques of others in the same business to be based on their point of view.  This doesn't make the critique inherently untrustworthy.  It does however, mean that when such criticism is recieved, a listener must attempt to understand that point of view and decide if the viewpoint (or critique) reflects the listener's values. If it does, the listener must judge the critque and decide how to change; if it doesn't, the listener can continue on without sparing a thought for it.   

In Topic: Protecting trade name and design ideas

22 May 2013 - 11:50 PM

(go get your own attorney. )

This is why I have to have a business liability insurance policy .
To many people these days do the above and if you have things you want to keep its what you must do.
As far as coping my pottery for the past 40 years I could care less as its plain hard work with clay -glazes and firing to pull off anything close to a copy.
It isnt rocket science its a whole lot more work.Thats why after all this time its still a learning curve.

I forgot to mention that there is also trade secret law which can provide some limited protection from corporate espionage - like stealing glaze recipes and formulas for clay bodies. Heh, but that's for people that have those kinds of secrets to keep, and I am not one of them.

In Topic: Protecting trade name and design ideas

22 May 2013 - 11:18 PM

There's at least three things that a potter could look into (by hiring a lawyer or reading the Copyright office or the Patent and Trademark office websites) to protect their business:

Copyright. There is copyright upon creation, so creative people have copyright without doing anything in particular except creating their own work. But to sue in federal court, the work must be registered. $65 per registration for the visual arts (U.S. copyright office), and pretty much irrefutable proof that the work was created before the registration date. This mostly protects against 1 to 1 copying of the original work, so, it's not very strong, and particluary not strong if there isn't much creative expression in the work.

Trademark. To protect the good will developing around a brand, however, register with the Trademark office. These go through some scrutiny, but trademarks last forever so long as they are used. Trademark law protects the name or mark (or a confusingly similar name or mark) from being used by competitors. Like, for example, 'fruit bat pottery' and 'vampire bat pottery.'

Design Patents. Finally, for decorative design that is both original, and valuable enough to go through the trouble, there is the design patent with the Patent Office. Patents have a well deserved reputation for being difficult to get. However, there should be functional pots that would qualify for this, so don't dismiss this as impossible. The Captain Picard tea set comes to my mind as the kind of thing a design patent will protect. And a design patent holds out the possibility that it would prevent a greater variety of copying of the ideas in work than copyright protection.

I am not giving legal advice people - don't ask me for any. go get your own attorney.

In Topic: Left at the Altar

18 April 2013 - 04:04 PM

Don't delete the phone message. Check with your small claims court. File the claim to cover the work (labor and materials) that you had into them. Use the recording as evidence.... the person KNEW that they were being recorded...so it is admissibnle evidence. Clearly there is an admission there that there WAS an order........ verbakl agreement. Not as strong as a written one.... but you might get lucky.

At the least, annoy the crap out of them.



You might want to consult a lawyer. Oral contracts are great for litigators. Much better than written contracts, because there's so much more to argue about. Of course, this isn't so great for you when you see the bill.

This is not legal advice for your problem, but potters in the United States should seriously consider reading, and at least attempting to understand, Article 2 of the Uniform Commercial Code. It's enacted by most U.S. states to be a uniform law of sales (each state has a version in its statute books). Article 2 of the U.C.C. has a provision that says: "a contract for the sale of goods for the price of $500 or more is not enforceable by way of action or defense unless there is some writing sufficient to indicate that a contract for sale has been made between the parties and signed by the party against whom enforcement is sought or by his authorized agent or broker." - http://www.law.corne...cc/2/2-201.html Because of this provision, I daresay that anyone taking orders from more than $500 of pottery should consider a signed written sales contract or signed work order to be a prerequisite to the sale. Otherwise there is a real danger that your oral contract isn't worth the paper its written on.

In Topic: Can you read this picture?

07 March 2013 - 05:33 PM

There's this moment looking at the painting when it seems like the artist sat the family down with the stuff on table, which none of them have actually used before, and said - here, pick up the teacups and pretend to drink so I can get a picture of you. It's like a wacky candid shot.

See, the father didn't even have any tea poured in his cup because he prefers beer (or rum!); the mother is holding the too hot cup up by the foot and the edge, because she wants to hold it, but not drink it; and the child is like - what's this taste like? There's four cups; three people, three spoons, but only two saucers - and one of the saucers is already holding a cup.

Then there is this question - Who poured the tea? I can only conclude its not a servant: the utensils are on the table and the sugar bowl is open. A servant wouldn't have brought, or left, and empty cup on the table, right? Who would leave the cover off a sugar dish? That stuff is as expensive as the tea - maybe moreso.

And, really, I don't care how ornamental the dog, you want to have a dog near your fine china? Look there - your can see the shadow under the edge of that plate right next the to dog - the edge of the plate is over the edge of the table. Doggie might have gone in a lap, but we want to show off our fine clothes, and don't want them to get messed up by actually holding the dog. So dog was seen on the ground, but painted into the chair/stool?, because everyone is sitting, but we don't want to have to paint thier feet - the canvas would be too big.

About the sitting - wife has a chair with a back; father has a chair with a back, but daughter? No back. Was it because the color doesn't go with the dress? Were these three even sitting at the table together? Mother has lots of fine details in her dress and facial expression, like she sat several times, but father and daugher look like they came over to the studio once for a quick sketch and that was it.

It's a funny picture indeed.