caploc — 2012-08-27T16:12:06-04:00 — #1
Do I understand correctly that in order to copyright a co-authored work, the co-authors must in advance, of starting on the coding, have made a written agreement stating which part of it each is to do? If so, is that line by line or what?
dan_grossman — 2012-08-27T20:18:00-04:00 — #2
No, copyright law requires no such advance agreement. Here's what it actually says about works with multiple authors:
shyflower — 2012-08-27T20:24:47-04:00 — #3
A lot of joint ownership of copyright really depends upon the co-authors' intent. Here is a good overview of joint copyright: http://www.ivanhoffman.com/coauthors.html. Like a lot of copyright issues, disagreements that result from joint ownership of copyright most often take a judge to decide. Your best hedge against problems is to be sure you have things spelled out specifically in a signed agreement that you and your co-author establish.
@Dan_Grossman ; The link you left appears to be about collective works which is different than a single piece authored by more than one person.
dan_grossman — 2012-08-28T14:41:31-04:00 — #4
I linked to the section about single works with multiple authors, not the section about collective works. This is the US Copyright Office website.
A joint work is defined in the copyright law as a “work prepared by two or more authors with the intention that their contributions be merged into inseparable or interdependent parts of a unitary whole.” In a joint work, all authors own an undivided interest in the entire work, without the need for any transfer of rights.
shyflower — 2012-08-28T14:56:02-04:00 — #5
For some reason when I click your link it resolves to: Registration of a Single Work Containing Multiple Authorship Elements by Different Authors