All posts in the ‘ Making Sense of Contracts ’ Category

What Does “Creator Owned” Mean?

What does it mean when a publisher or distributor says that the things they sell are “creator owned”?

It’s a great question, but (surprise!) it doesn’t have a simple or straightforward answer. … Read More

Work For Hire or Copyright Assignment?

Here’s a question that keeps popping up in my conversations with creators:

What’s the difference between a “work made for hire” and when I assign my copyright to someone else? In both cases I no longer own the copyright, so what’s the difference?… Read More

Why Clients Object To Your Totally Reasonable Contract Language

You’ve read all the Very Best internet articles about putting a contract together.

You collected five different copies of contracts and painstakingly stitched together a contract that does exactly what you need it to do: no more, no less.

You proudly send the contract off to a client, patting yourself on the back for being a professional with her own legal documents. You are confident … Read More

Not All Contracts Are Created Equally

A contract is a contract is a contract.


Sort of.… Read More

Reading the Fine Print

Two very exciting things happened on the internet this last week!

One: Getty Images announced it would start licensing a portion of its massive image collection for no cost.

And, two: Amtrak embraced the fervor of the hashtag and established a for-real writer’s residency hosted on its long-distance trains.

Both things are ridiculously cool.

And both things came with fine print.

Why does fine print Read More

Three Questions About Contracts

I get questions from freelancers about contracts and how to use them All. The. Time.

Which is great! Because I love contracts and I love answering questions.

I picked three questions that I get fairly often from freelancers, artists and folks trying to DIY their business. I hope the answers help you in pursuit of professional success and, you know, dollaz.… Read More

Know What You’re Giving Up, Before You Give It Up

If I came to you and said, “I like the cut of your jib, kid, what say I give you $1000 and you let me take something, anything, out of your house? Whadayasay? It’s a good deal; you might not get such a good offer ever again. ”

Would you take me up on it? $1000 for any single personal possession of yours that I … Read More

Ghost Rider and the No Good, Very Bad Contract

I get a lot of questions about what a “good” contract looks like. It’s a tough question because “good” depends on what you need the contract to do. A contract that works really well in one instance might be a flaming pile of trash in another.

What I can do is show you what unhelpful contracts look like — contracts that everyone thought were going … Read More

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Copyright and Conflict in Collaborative Projects

One of the great things about making art is the opportunity to collaborate with other creators. You get to borrow each other’s brains, see stories through one another’s eyes, and create things together that neither of you could have created on your own. There’s just one little thing: it can be


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