Question about co-owner copyright dispute

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  • Hi everyone,

    First I'd like to thank you all for the helpful advice you provided for me some time ago, now I have a new question for any who might be able to offer any insights.

    About 5-6 years ago I worked on a collaboartive comic-type art project online. Unfortunately there was no written contract between us as at the time we were doing it 'for fun.' Hindsight is 20/20 though, and Lord do I regret not hammering out an airtight set of stipulations stating *EXACTLY* what the terms were in regards to who owned what, etc.

    My question is, do I have exclusive copyrights to the characters I created for this series, or do they fall into the trap of co-ownership even though my former partner had no hand in their creation and does not claim to have helped with their creation? If that is the case, are there any steps that I can take to liberate my characters from the collaboartive idea and/or transfer them to another original idea created by me?

    Any help would be greatly appreciated, many thanks in advance :)
  • Hi Brandon,

    This is a tough question that you might need a lawyer to solve. If it's a matter of a disagreement between your partner and you, there's not much anyone else can do to help. If, as you say, you created the characters and your partner had no hand in the creative process, AND your work could not be construed as a "work for hire" arrangement, then it seems to me like the copyright belongs to you.

    Note that I'm not a lawyer and this is just my opinion knowing very little about the actual situation.

  • Thank you very much for your input JMiller :)

    I'm hoping that is the case because I would like to take the characters that I created and simply use them in another idea that's my own creation. I'm presuming that the characters I created from scratch are 100% mine since my partner had no hand in their concept or creation. I'll keep combing through the internet though, and if all else fails I guess I'll start pricing lawyer consultations.

    Thanks again!

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