IP differences between NFTs and Traditional Art

When it comes to the legal issues surrounding intellectual property (IP), there are many similarities between non-fungible tokens (NFTs) and traditional art. However, there are also some key differences that you need to be aware of if you are buying, selling or creating either.

  1. Ownership and Copyright

In both cases, the owner of the artwork owns the copyright, which gives them exclusive rights to reproduce, distribute, and display the work. However, with NFTs, the ownership of the digital artwork is recorded on a blockchain, which can make it easier to prove ownership and track any transactions related to it.

  1. Licensing

Both traditional art and NFTs can be licensed to others for reproduction or display. However, the terms of the license should be clearly stated and agreed upon by both parties to avoid any disputes later on.

  1. Fair Use

Fair use is a legal doctrine that allows for the use of copyrighted material without permission in certain circumstances, such as for criticism, commentary, news reporting, teaching, scholarship, or research. However, the boundaries of fair use can be complex, and it is important to seek legal advice if you are unsure whether your use of a work falls under fair use or not.

  1. Plagiarism

Plagiarism is the act of passing off someone else’s work as your own. This is a serious issue in both traditional art and NFTs, and can lead to legal action being taken against the plagiarizer.

  1. Contracts

Contracts are an important tool in both traditional art and NFTs. They should be used to clearly outline the terms of any transaction or license, including the rights and responsibilities of each party. It is important to have a lawyer review any contracts to ensure that they are legally sound and protect your interests.

In conclusion, while there are many similarities between the intellectual property legal issues of traditional art and NFTs, there are also some key differences that you need to be aware of. By understanding these issues and seeking legal advice when necessary, you can protect your rights and interests when dealing with both traditional art and NFTs.

Types of Music Royalties

Music licenses and royalties generally fall into the four categories outlined below:

  1. Performance rights Royalties – These rights deal with live performances or broadcasts. The licensee pays a set fee to a PRO and is generally able to play the entire collection (or in some instances and individual property) covered. Performance royalties are paid to the songwriters and publishers when the song/s are performed live or on radio.
  2. Mechanical licenses Royalties – These refer to mechanically reproduced music (i.e. CD, Cassette etc.) for public distribution. The publisher grants an allowance for the composition to be reproduced and in turn a royalty is paid to the artist, songwriter and publisher on a per/recording sold basis.
  3. Synchronization rights Royalties – These licenses are needed for compositions to be reproduced and used in other forms of media such as television, film, video, games, etc… The synchronization royalty is paid to the songwriters and publishers for use as “background music.”
  4. Print rights Royalties – These are paid to publishers and songwriters based on sales of their printed musical compositions and sheets.

These royalties listed above are the main types in the United States and there may be others in other countries and jurisdictions.

As with all issues in law, there are generally no one clear answer to certain issues and the circumstances are always of vital importance.



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AfroChic Presents – INSPIRED Art Basel

December 9th, 2018, The AfroChic team descended on Miami Florida for a cultural and educational experience with Art Basel Inspired, which took place in the Historic Overtown, Miami, FL at the newly opened The Urban. See the recap video and looking forward to next year.