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Copyright your Name? It's a FRAUD!
Lately many in the patriot movement are advocating that people copyright their name. The first question that comes to mind is WHY? Is there such a thing as copyrighting your name? Is common law copyrighting applicable to your name? Absolutely NOT.
I know many 'US patriots' are going to be upset at this article and study. However, I counter that argument, with the fact that I have been in the publishing business for many years, involved with common law and statutory copyrights, and I know that these 'patriot' teachers have not given full disclosure to the people they have taught to follow these ill-advised schemes. Nor have they told of the possible repercussions and dangers that could lie around the corner for using such a scheme.
First one must go deep into the history books to find out exactly what a copyright is and how it is applied in common law. Copyright, while including a conjunction of the word 'right' is not an inherent or inalienable right at all. Rather it is a right (privilege) granted by the crown, (i.e. government). The issue of copyright was moot until the invention of the printing press. Copyright is property that can be assigned, sold, contracted, and transferred.
To hold a copyright under common law, certain pre-requisites have to be met. First the idea, book, writing, etc., must be a person's own creation. This is termed intellectual or literary property. An idea or writing that one person solely possesses must be of their own original creation. Secondly, the idea or writing must be UNPUBLISHED to assume a common law copyright. Third, it must be in a tangible form to identify and express. Your name fits none of the common law requisites. You did not originate your name, your name is not unpublished, and it is not intellectual property which can be sold, transferred, or traded.
The common law copyright is well established in history, in England, Texas, and the United States. England, in 1710, had to legislate a copyright law, statutorily, for material leaving the 'common law copyright' when the work became published. There was no protection for the author or publisher until the legislation was created. In 1976 the United States pre-empted common law by a revision of the statutory copyright laws, allowing owners of works under 'common law copyright' the privilege of registering their copyrighted material statutorily. The 1976 legislation did not 'do away' with common law copyright, but actually gave the author the right to statutorily register a copyright prior to publication to further protect their works.
Understand that copyright is legal protection of a person's intellectual property. It is property that can be contracted, sold, and traded. Also realize that copyrights, outside the unpublished works common law copyright, are created by legislation and statutes. This is a well documented fact of history. The first statutory copyright laws were named the Statute of Anne, in England, in 1710.
"The similarities between civil and common law copyright start with history. Consider the parallel reactions of Scotland and England in the 18th century to the first great Question of Literary Property, whether copyright in a published work could exist at all outside specific legislation establishing it. That great Question climaxed in the 1770s in the battle between the London stationers - the book publishers of the day - and their nemeses, the Scottish reprinters. The London stationers claimed a perpetual copyright in their inventories, beyond the 28 years= maximum protection granted by the Copyright Act of 1710. Both the Scottish and the English courts, looking to Roman law and beyond, ruled against them, dismissing any notion of a common law copyright in published works. An author might have a perpetual incorporeal property in an unpublished work and might prevent its publication or surreptitious copying without his consent. But once published with the owner's authority, the work could be freely copied unless a specific statute protected it. When the same point arose in the mid-19th century in the United States, the Supreme Court took the same line as the British courts had in the 18th century." http://law.kub.nl
If you have published your work in nearly any form, which you had common law copyright vested, your common law copyright was thusly ended. If you published your works without statutorily protecting your works, then you released the material into public domain. It became FREE for anyone to copy and use. This was the reason and cause for statutory law offering the privilege of protected copyright.
"What can be Copyrighted?" "Copyright attaches to original works fixed in a tangible form of expression..."
"What can't be Copyrighted?" "In addition to works not fixed in a tangible form of expression, other types of works that can't be copyrighted are titles, names, short phrases, slogans and the like (trademark protection may be available though); ideas (copyright protects only the tangible expression of the idea, not the idea itself); procedures, methods, systems, processes, concepts, principles etc.; and works consisting entirely of information that is common property and containing no original authorship such as calendars and facts of the world." © 2000, Elena Fawkner
Names or titles of books and movies for instance are NOT COPYRIGHTED and cannot be copyrighted. MacDonalds is a registered trademark of a hamburger company, but even that name cannot be copyrighted. The trademark does not stop someone from using the name MacDonalds. It is only narrow and limited protection from competitors.
So, can you copyright your name? Is your name YOUR own unpublished personal, original idea and construction? NO it is not! Your name was published for the world to see and know at the time of your birth. Your name is not an unpublished work. Common law never allowed anyone to copyright their name or title. Common law copyrights are not recorded or registered anywhere.
There is only one nation that I could find in the world allowing a statutory copyright on a name, and that is Communist China --- they are reconsidering that practice. No where else allows the copyrighting of a name, in common law or statutory law.
The patriot teachings are pure fiction, bearing no basis in common law whatsoever. The very second you record your so-called copyrighted name paperwork into any records for public filing and viewing, you ended any presumed common law copyright and gave it to public domain. Technically, you have filed a fraudulent paper claiming something you never had and if had, lost upon filing publicly.
If you have used that 'presumed copyrighted' name or paper to threaten the government or a government official, or enter a demand against them, there is the possibility of being charged under "False Claims Act"(s) which the Feds and most States have. If you have used the presumed copyrighted name against another private party or governments in a attempt to 'charge' them for the use of your name you could be charged with FRAUD and extortion, since there is no common law application that will protect your claim of copyright, nor is there a statutory protection for this act.
Claiming to own something with exclusive rights to that property, even your name, that you cannot lawfully possess exclusively is morally wrong. It violates the very principles that the Republic of Texas stands for. To attempt to defraud, even if ill-advised, and you were ignorant of the common law copyright requisites, remains a violation of Texas Common Law. You would immediately be found guilty as charged.
The use of this scheme is very unwise and presents the ignorance of the people that advocated it. It is morally wrong to claim copyright on something that you did not create.
Are you going to jail for using this scheme? Not likely -- at this time -- but there are some reports of legal actions against people using this copyright scheme. Did the person that advised this scheme tell you of these possibilities? Again, not likely. These patriot 'prima donnas' will ignorantly lead you to the slaughterhouse, but they don't stick around to see or stop the slaughter.
If you claim or mark something copyrighted, which cannot be copyrighted by law, common law, etc., then that is a lie. It is a fraud.
Personally, I would try to get back all copies of those fraudulent name copyright papers or write to the people you sent them to and tell them you have since discovered their inapplicability for the remedy you sought. Tell them you were ill-advised. If you recorded these fraudulent instruments, then simply record a new instrument that tells the truth and the facts concerning why and how you came to file such a paper in the first place. Revoke the copyright paperwork by entering new information under notary or seal. If nothing has happened, perhaps it is best to let sleeping dogs lie.
Above all don't call me for advice, I'm fresh out. I did not advise you to copyright your name.
By the way trademarks, registered names, and patents follow similar or same requisites as copyrights, but they have less foundation in common law. Don't jeopardize your integrity for ill-fated schemes, (possibly crimes), that only cost you time and money.
It's long overdue..
Let's take our nation of Texas back
from this insanity
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