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Help! How Do You Copyright Something.  
User currently offlineBlackhawk144 From , joined Dec 1969, posts, RR:
Posted (10 years 4 weeks 22 hours ago) and read 1491 times:


I need help, because I want to copyright something legally. This is going to be very complex, and is going to cost a lot of moolah, I'm assuming. The hardest part, is that I feel I am not going to be taken seriously or anything because I am 13 years of age.  Sad



20 replies: All unread, jump to last
User currently offlineConcord977 From United States of America, joined Jan 2004, 1261 posts, RR: 24
Reply 1, posted (10 years 4 weeks 21 hours ago) and read 1462 times:

Can you be a little more specific?

Are you talking about a story, photograph, invention or discovery?

Copyrights usually only apply to words and images. Anything else requires a patent.

No info
User currently offlineBlackhawk144 From , joined Dec 1969, posts, RR:
Reply 2, posted (10 years 4 weeks 21 hours ago) and read 1455 times:

A Virtual Airline


User currently offlineConcord977 From United States of America, joined Jan 2004, 1261 posts, RR: 24
Reply 3, posted (10 years 4 weeks 21 hours ago) and read 1452 times:

You'll need to copyright the name, logos and image separately.

No info
User currently offlineLogan22L From , joined Dec 1969, posts, RR:
Reply 4, posted (10 years 4 weeks 20 hours ago) and read 1432 times:

Anthony: Google the US Patent office, and try to link up to the requirements. It is not as expensive as you might think, although it will take some paperwork and some money. As a stop-gap measure while you are waiting for the forms to be processed, write down all your ideas on paper, mail them to yourself (make sure they clearly postmark it by handing it to the teller personally), and DO NOT OPEN THE LETTER when it comes to you (it may also help to ask if they will postmark across the envelope seal, explain why you are doing this and they will hopefully oblige). The unopened, postmarked letter will serve as legal proof of the date of your ideas. It is not foolproof, and you certainly must go through the copyright process also, but it could help.

Good luck,


User currently offlineCaribb From Canada, joined Nov 1999, 1640 posts, RR: 8
Reply 5, posted (10 years 4 weeks 20 hours ago) and read 1429 times:

Just mail a copy of it to yourself and keep the envelope unopened with the post mark clean and protected in a safety deposit box. If ever anyone questions it you have proof it was your concept as of that date. It's a simple form of copyright protection for simple things like photographs and hand written material.

sorry..just saw the above post said the same thing... but it's worth repeating.

User currently offlineJfkaua From United States of America, joined Aug 2004, 1000 posts, RR: 3
Reply 6, posted (10 years 4 weeks 17 hours ago) and read 1388 times:

I don't get this whole virtual airliner thing?

User currently offlineAAplatnumflier From , joined Dec 1969, posts, RR:
Reply 7, posted (10 years 4 weeks 17 hours ago) and read 1383 times:

Well it has to be a real thing for you to Copyright it. Also you have to have proof of your "copyrighted item" do you not?

User currently offlineBackfire From Germany, joined Oct 2006, 0 posts, RR: 0
Reply 8, posted (10 years 4 weeks 11 hours ago) and read 1347 times:

There's no such thing as 'applying for copyright'. If you're talking about a written document, like an article or story, then it is automatically copyright as soon as you write it.

You might be talking about protecting an idea or invention - in which case you need a patent, not copyright.

User currently offlineYbacpa From United States of America, joined Feb 2001, 1108 posts, RR: 1
Reply 9, posted (10 years 4 weeks 7 hours ago) and read 1323 times:

Copyrighting is only half of the due diligence you need to do. If this is intended to ultimately become a business, you should seriously consider applying for a trademark on the name, logo, slogan, etc. for your airline. Trademarks are more expensive to apply for (technically speaking, a copyright is free, ALL original works produced in the US are protected by copyright laws), but is much easier to defend in court.

Good luck,


SkyTeam: The alliance for third rate airlines finally getting their act together!
User currently offlineKilljoy From Finland, joined Dec 1999, 646 posts, RR: 0
Reply 10, posted (10 years 4 weeks 5 hours ago) and read 1313 times:

People on this forum need to stop giving advice when they don't know what they're talking about. I can't believe reply 8 is the first to explain how copyright actually works.

Anyway, you want to do *what* with a virtual airline? Are you on crack?

Before you patent anything, carefully consider why exactly your invention would be worth stealing. Is there enough realistic profit involved for you to spend money and time documenting it and submitting an application? Why would anyone pay to join a virtual airline?

User currently offlineLindy From , joined Dec 1969, posts, RR:
Reply 11, posted (10 years 4 weeks 5 hours ago) and read 1306 times:


You have definately killed joy in this topic  Big grin

"Anyway, you want to do *what* with a virtual airline? Are you on crack?" - this is good one  Smile


User currently offlineCaribb From Canada, joined Nov 1999, 1640 posts, RR: 8
Reply 12, posted (10 years 4 weeks 5 hours ago) and read 1304 times:


You have definately killed joy in this topic

My first thought too when I read it LOL..

User currently offlineLuisde8cd From Pitcairn Islands, joined Aug 2004, 2575 posts, RR: 30
Reply 13, posted (10 years 4 weeks 4 hours ago) and read 1292 times:


I just hope that that virtual airline of yours isnt simulating an existing airlike (for example: Virtual Delta Airlines, Virtual Frontier Airlines, bla bla), because if that's the case then you'll get in a legal mess if the airline finds out that you are using/copyrighting their brand name without authorization.

Here in Venezuela I tried to start with some friends, Aeropostal Virtual. One month after we got the airline online, we got an email from real Aeropostal threatening legal action against us for using their brand name without authorization, so we had to shut down the airline  Sad

User currently offlineJuanr From , joined Dec 1969, posts, RR:
Reply 14, posted (10 years 4 weeks 3 hours ago) and read 1281 times:


As for Andean nations regulations a paper or an image is copyrighted once it is written, or drawn or taken, so reply No. 8 is quite accurate for me. We separate industrial property from intellectual Property, on this Industrial Property we include brands, names, patents, etc, on Intellectual P. we include books, web pages, draws, etc; the first one require an application form, a publication, a process in which other persons can oppose, and finally a legal act of the authority providing the ownership of the brand, name, patent. On the other side, when writing a book, a song, painting a draw, etc, you are the owner from the very begging and need no permission from the authority at all, however, if you are using brands of other owners you must request permission to do so.

The whole process can be quite expensive, I know it because I work at a IP law firm. Ask a lawyer (that is expensive too)


User currently offlineSpinzels From United States of America, joined Jun 2004, 335 posts, RR: 0
Reply 15, posted (10 years 4 weeks 2 hours ago) and read 1276 times:

As several of the posts above note, it is not necessary to apply for copyright protection, copyright automatically exists once a work is fixed in tangible form. Once your work is fixed in tangible form, you may then optionally apply for a federal registration of your copyright with the Copyright Office (which in the US is a totally separate organization from the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office). The chief benefit of a Federal Registration is that you can bring a copyright infringement action in Federal Court.

I don’t really think copyright protection is what you are looking for, but as several of the above posters have mentioned it seems that trademark protection is more suited to you. Again, you don’t have to apply for trademark protection, you can simply take it for yourself. Append the TM symbol to indicate that you are using your names and marks as trademarks, and have a legal notices link on your website clearly delineating what you are asserting as your trademarks. And always use your trademark as an adjective, e.g., Kodak Camera, Kleenex Tissue, Xerox Photocopiers.

You can if you wish even apply for a federal registration—which would allow you to put the (R) symbol on your mark. You can learn to fill out a trademark application for yourself after doing some research. There are extensive resources on the USPTO’s website (). In particular it will be necessary for you to peruse the TMEP- Trademark Manual of Examining Procedure. The Examining Attorneys at the PTO can be very helpful too when they review your application. Just be polite and make it clear that you are seriously interested in learning about trademarks and obtaining one for yourself.

Your age is not a problem. Your parents will have to sign some of the legal documents, but I can’t believe they wouldn’t be supportive of a child who is taking a recreational interest in intellectual property law! One problem is cost, applying for a trademark is a bit expensive: $335.00 to be exact. Still, wouldn’t having your own registered trademark look great on your Harvard admissions application?

And Luisde8cd makes an extremely important point: once you think of a name and set of marks for your VA, do a search for similar marks using the trademark search engine on the USPTO web page. Also, do searching on google.com as well. Thompson and Thompson will do a professional search for you for just a few hundred dollars (I think), but that’s probably not necessary. If someone is already using the same or similar name that you have selected, pick a different one.

There is one very big problem here, which is that trademark protection absolutely requires use of the trademark in commerce (for state or common law protection) or in interstate commerce (for federal registration and protection under the Lanham Act). You can’t just dream up a mark and then claim trademark ownership of it without using it on actual goods or services. I’m not sure whether the use of a trademark in connection with a virtual airline would be considered use in commerce. It might be helpful to have a subscriber option on your webpage, where people can get extras if they pay an additional cost. I think it is worth trying, although granted, it isn’t my $335.

A lot of work to do, but it would be an excellent educational experience that you can certainly milk throughout the rest of your schooling on various school projects like term papers, civics lessons, etc. Good luck!

I've been to Paradise, but I've never been to me
User currently offlineBlackhawk144 From , joined Dec 1969, posts, RR:
Reply 16, posted (10 years 3 weeks 6 days 22 hours ago) and read 1255 times:


Thank you everybody, so much! I looked into it, and I see a lot of you were right. I have decided to trademark it all. I'm not far away from $335.00, and I checked out the US Tradmark offices for fees and everything. I will not make just the TM mark, but will pay the full $335.00 when I have the money to do so. I've already come up with a clever name, livery, aircraft, hubs, routes, route maps, while I've got a website designer as well who has created a website.

Even Killjoy was right on a few points...but worded it horribly IMO...I just don't get his statement:

"Anyway, you want to do *what* with a virtual airline? Are you on crack?"

I want to create and run a virtual airline. The reason I want to put a tradmark is because recently the Virtual Airline Jetstar International was overwhelmed by unwanted emails that were supposed to go to the real airline for stuff like promotions and stuff like that, and thus their site crashed. The owners of JetStar International are now sueing the real airline, made by Qantas. I don't think that would've been possible without the copyright. So no...I'm not on crack. I just want to think safe.  Smile

I do admit that you are right. Why would anyone pay to join a Virtual Airline? Well, you're question is right, but I don't see what that has anything to do with me. To join my virtual airline is for free.

Now I'm pretty sure someone is going to ask "Why are you going to do this just for a virtual airline?"

The answer: As unbelieveable, or unrealistic you may think it is...I plan for my virtual airline to one day become a real airline flying the skies in the real world, and not just flight simulators. I'm going to devote my whole career into this big project. I will be taking buisness management classes later on in high school. I'm going to make this a real airline, and I feel that nothing will stop me.

I want to make sure my ideas stay my ideas. I want to someday see my virtual airline take off from San Francisco as a real airline, and not just a virtual reality. That is why I'm also trying to make my Virtual Airline as realistic as possible, rather than having every imaginable aircraft type, and have hubs in every single major airport.

As a last word, I just want to say a great big thank you to everybody who has helped me out. You'll soon find yourselves on my RR list Big grin


User currently offlineBlackhawk144 From , joined Dec 1969, posts, RR:
Reply 17, posted (10 years 3 weeks 5 days 8 hours ago) and read 1193 times:

I just remembered a question I wanted to ask...Is there an age limit you have to be in order to sue somebody?

Thanks again,

User currently offlineAa61hvy From United States of America, joined Nov 1999, 13977 posts, RR: 56
Reply 18, posted (10 years 3 weeks 5 days 1 hour ago) and read 1164 times:

Must have a lawyer to sue, unless you want to represent yourself I believe, good luck at getting a decent attorney. If you're having trouble scraping up 300 bucks you won't get a good attorney. Or good luck on reading up on law.

Go big or go home
User currently offlineBlackhawk144 From , joined Dec 1969, posts, RR:
Reply 19, posted (10 years 3 weeks 4 days 23 hours ago) and read 1150 times:


I'm bad at detecting sarcasm. Are you being serious or sarcastic?


User currently offlineORDflyer From United States of America, joined Aug 2004, 511 posts, RR: 0
Reply 20, posted (10 years 3 weeks 4 days 23 hours ago) and read 1140 times:

I'm bad at detecting sarcasm. Are you being serious or sarcastic?
""According to my sarcasm detector, yes!"--Professor Frink from the Simpsons

In seriousness, if you have the money you'd have no trouble finding a lawyer as long as your case was strong. I'm not sure if there are minimum ages, but I assume if you are too young then you could go through your parents and have them represent you.
Sounds like you have an interesting idea there...hope it works out well. Like somebody mentioned above, if nothing else this will look good on college applications.

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