Thursday, April 29, 2010

CoCo Day Camp: “Common Myths and Misconceptions About Copyrights and Trademarks”

On Thursday, May 6th, I'll be providing a seminar for creative professionals on how creative professionals are affected by copyright (e.g., public domain, fair use, joint works and work for hire) and trademark law at CoCo in downtown St. Paul. the program is set to run from 10am to 12pm.

Session + 1/2 day of coworking: $30
Session only: $15

About CoCo:

CoCo is a coworking and collaborative space in Lowertown St. Paul (and coming soon to Minneapolis), where independent workers and small businesses can gather to share ideas, team up on projects and get some work done. We’re an alternative to working from home or the local coffee shop.

Who can Sue when a Freelancer is Discriminated Against?

Freelancers take note: Under Minnesota Law if you have formed an LLC or other business entity and you experience discrimination at the hands of one of your clients, as an individual you cannot make a claim under Minnesota's Human Rights Act (Minn. Stat. § 363A.17 (2008)), which authorizes parties to a business contract to sue for business discrimination in the performance of that contract.

The Minnesota Supreme Court reasoned in Krueger v. Zeman Construction Co. that the focus of the statue was the relationship of the parties, not on the individual subject to the discrimination. As a result, the court argued that an individual employee, even one that is a single member owner of an LLC, is not the intended beneficiary of the statute and therefore they cannot file a lawsuit in their individual capacity.

While I generally believe freelancers should consider business entities like LLC over that of sole proprietorship, this case provides a stark example of how there are some disadvantages to forming a separate legal entity and an evaluation of the advantages and disadvantages should always be considered.

Monday, April 26, 2010

The 2010 Midwest Art, Entertainment & Sports Law Institute

I will be presenting along with many other area attorneys at next weeks Midwest Art, Entertainment & Sports Law Institute. Come out and hear about some the latest opportunities and challenges facing the attorneys for the art, entertainment and sports communities.

Highlights Include:

  • Former ASCAP executive and current president of a music publishing company, attorney Ron Sobel will “teach, discuss, rant and rave” about intellectual property pitfalls, new media trends, current revenue models and licensing protocols

  • Music publishing contracts and other issues in the digital age

  • The FTC’s take on endorsements and Internet advertising

  • The hottest legal and ethical concerns in college sports

  • A review of core intellectual property concepts, as well as contract, licensing entity basics with a nod to the creative client

  • The Ramifications of Supreme Court Review of American Needle

  • Your Client Said WHAT?? Lauren Bloom, J.D., L.L.M., author of The Art of the Apology, will give us valuable insights into helping our clients out of potential PR and legal nightmares