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Outbound- Stu Hamm or The Flecktones????

Discussion in 'Recordings [BG]' started by JHMAVRO, Sep 6, 2000.



    May 29, 2000
    hooksett NH USA
    I just noticed that Stu Hamms New CD is called "Outbound"
    Well so is the New Flecktones album.
    Is this legal??? Just curious
  2. JimK


    Dec 12, 1999
    Why would it be illegal?! It's just a word...
    I think Eric Dolphy had an album named OUTBOUND back from the '60s.
  3. I'm no Lawyer, but I don't think that you can Copyright a
    word unless it is a trademark or corporate symbol. Come to think of it, the Guy who invented the alphabet wrote
    everything,but he never got any Royalties...:)
  4. Christopher


    Apr 28, 2000
    New York, NY
    Probably not.

    You can't copyright a word or title. Copyright protects expression fixed in a tangible medium, which entails more than coming up with a single word.

    You can trademark a word used in connection with goods and services, provided that the mark is fanciful (completely made up); arbitrary (an existing word tied to a completely unrelated product); descriptive, but having secondary meaning (ie. consumers associate the descriptive term with the purveyor of the good or service rather than a quality of the good or service itself).

    A trademark user may allege infringement against another who uses an identical or similar mark, provided, inter alia, that the trademark owner actually has priority/ownership of the mark and a likelihood of confusion exists amongst consumers as to the origin of the accused goods or services.

    In this case, while "Outbound" appears prima facie trademarkeable Fleck's or Hamm's labels may not have bothered to register "Outbound" for their respective recordings, thereby making priority/ownership harder to prove. Furthermore, it is questionable whether a likelihood of confusion exists in this case. Although the goods and the markets are superficially similar (jazz-fusion sound recordings), consumers in this market are fairly sophisticated and are likely to give greater weight to the artists' names than the album titles in considering their purchases.
  5. gmstudio99


    Mar 11, 2000
    Cleveland, OH
    Christopher, it's funny you said that last thing, because I actually own the Bela Fleck disc and didn't even know that was it's title!



    May 29, 2000
    hooksett NH USA
    Thanks Chris, I'll take your word for it!!!
  7. Christopher


    Apr 28, 2000
    New York, NY
    You're welcome. The above, by the way, is idle speculation on my part. It's not a legal opinion and shouldn't be construed as such.

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