Some paragraphs and parts of same are accurate. We reference those parts that are not by highlighting them in the article.
Janet Jo Smith claims she is an attorney however the Colorado Bar Association does not list her as an attorney. Of the 17 "J Smiths" listed by the
Colorado Bar, her name does not appear. Why would an attorney NOT be a member of the Bar? The Colorado Supreme Court lists her as being "Active"
but not in "Private Practice". But we cannot find a law firm that lists her as an attorney in their employ. And she does not carry "Professional Liability Insurance".
What gives here? And what is her bias on the pattern use issue?
There is far more than one rule of copyright. The reserved rights of the copyright owner have a number statutory limitations that Janet Jo Smith generally ignores.
The picture of a woman in jail
The picture of the crafter in prison is very misleading. Civil violations do not result in jail time, only criminal violations. A criminal violation is prosecuted
by the federal government. Any person involved in criminal copyright infringement will not be reading this magazine. It was a poor choice of artwork
but we feel it was deliberately selected to put fear into the minds of innocent users.
The problem with this statement is the all-inclusiveness that does not exist. And this "definition" is used as a set-up for later claims that are false.
The right to make copies applies to the work that is actually covered by the copyright, and that is in this case, the original quilt and/or pattern.
If a copy of the quilt is sold to you, the copy is yours and you have a right to
display that copy and to take pictures of that copy.
If a copy of the pattern is sold to you, the quilt you make from the pattern is yours as if you bought the quilt with the same right of display and pictures
as well as the right to sell that copy you made from the pattern you purchased.
Imagine that you have purchased a dress pattern from McCall's. You make the dress from the pattern and then wear the dress to a fundraiser for a local
charity. A newspaper photographer takes a picture of you wearing the dress and the picture is in the next day's edition under local news. According to
Janet Jo Smith, you are now guilty of several counts of copyright infringement and so is the newspaper. Please. Get real. Or how about your
Aunt Millie uses a Simplicity pattern to make an apron that she wears to a family reunion where there are over 100 people. She poses in a lot of
family-related pictures still wearing the apron. According to Janet Jo Smith Aunt Millie is a criminal? Really? Does that even sound reasonable?
This is an incorrect description of a derivative. The copyrighted work must
be recast or transformed into something original and be copyrightable itself. A copyright often does not extend to all aspects of a work. Many elements
of a copyrighted work can be deemed to be unprotectable. One example would be a quilt depicting the alphabet. An author cannot create an alphabet
quilt and then deny all others from doing the same. There are many ways to express the alphabet on a quilt. If the works are substantially similar and a
reasonable observer would conclude that one expression
was substantially similar and was copied from the other, that would be infringement under copyright law.
Factual within the limitations we have already discussed.
This paragraph reiterates her misleading definitions and claims. Her approach appears to be that if you repeat the lie often enough then people will believe it.
It works for socialist politicians so why not for pseudo-lawyers? By her definitions, a copy in "any medium" includes what one makes from the pattern. The
problem with her definition is that the US Supreme Court stated in 1879 [paragraph 18]
that dresses made from a pattern are not covered by any copyright the pattern may hold. And her claim that ownership does not give one the right to make copies
is accurate until she tries to apply that statement that to the making of items from the pattern and then it fails because items made from patterns are not copies
Back to repeating the lies. Getting permission, under copyright law, requires permission to be in writing, such as
through a contract, not verbal and not through an email.
A required conveyance is a "document effecting a property transfer" and is not done casually. And, as previously stated, if you have lawfully acquired the
pattern then what you make from it is yours to do with as you wish (barring misrepresentation, etc.) Once the copyright holder has released the pattern
into commerce, the copyright holder loses control
over the use of the pattern.
There is no "implied permission" when one purchases a pattern. Making something from the pattern is absolutely granted upon one acquiring lawful
possession of the pattern. The Ford Motor Company does not give you "implied permission" to drive one of its vehicles once you have bought it.
Betty Crocker does not give you "implied permission" to make brownies from one of her mixes. Imagine a book publisher stating that you can
only read the book once and then you must dispose of it? Once you have paid the manufacturer their asking price, it is yours. What elevated pattern designers
to a god-like status? Their own arrogance and their deliberate misapplication of copyright law? And the term "for personal use" is garbage. Without a written
contract stating otherwise, a copyright owner cannot impose use restrictions upon their product by simply printing them on the item or claiming them later.
See Bobbs-Merril vs Straus,
US Supreme Court, 210 U.S. 339 (1908).
See ¶ 4 and ¶ 8 above. Permission is not required. However, claiming the work as original to you would be asking for
big trouble. The public display aspect of the designer's exclusive rights does not apply to a lawfully acquired copy or from one made from the pattern.
Imagine that you purchased a painting for some large amount of money and you then hung that painting in the lobby of your business and then you were
cited for copyright infringement for an unauthorized public display? The artist sold you the painting and upon doing so, lost the exclusive right of public display.
Does that make sense? Once purchased, the designer forfeits control absent a written contract.
Finally, Janet Jo Smith stops skirting the issue and makes the claim that making something from a pattern is making "a copy" under copyright law.
She lies. When you purchase the pattern, assuming the pattern has been copyrighted and most patterns are not
registered with the copyright office, copyright law would only
cover the pattern you purchased, not what you make from the pattern. This is one of the really big lies upon which pattern designers base their
claims. The statement here, in ¶ 11, directly contradicts her statements in ¶ 7
concerning making and selling copies. And notice her use of the singular "copy" when the purchaser of the pattern has the right to make
more than one item to sell. She is attempting to impose the imaginary "one copy" rule on those who purchase patterns.
The problem that Janet Jo Smith encounters, as do pattern designers, is that their fuzzy logic soon begins to contradict itself. This happens
when one group start telling too many lies in order to justify their position. You will notice no such contradictions in the rebuttal logic we present.
Our position is consistent. And we quote statutes and case law to support what we claim.
The fact that McCall's Patterns has some 108 copyright registrations
but there is not one of McCall's individual clothing patterns registered should be an indicator. A clothing garment constitutes a ''useful article'' under copyright
law and therefore cannot be copyrighted. If it cannot be copyrighted then it does don have copyright protection. A quilt is a useful item. The design on the
quilt can qualify for copyright registration so what the pattern designer is really doing is selling the design and not the quilt. They have sold you the design to
be used on the quilt and without a signed agreement stating otherwise, that design is yours to use for personal or commercial use (within limited
She again lightly touches the "copying" subject by using the singular "copy" when "copies" is more proper. Having each student purchase a copy
of the pattern, or the magazine, is correct.
Janet Jo Smith starts off correctly but gets bogged down with another contradiction. The magazine cannot lawfully copyright the work of someone else.
The periodical copyright on the magazine covers the protectible elements of the issue but not the registered or unregistered work of another party.
Generally, magazines and other publications acquire limited publication rights. The rights acquired by the publication are no greater than those owned
by the pattern designer. When the magazine sells you the issue, all patterns in it are lawfully acquired by you and can be used by you without
any further permission. Imagine buying a book of recipes and not being able to use a recipe for chocolate chip cookies to sell at a bake sale
without first getting permission from the author. Does that make sense? And then, Janet Jo Smith says you need permission from the publisher as well?
Copying the pattern to sell or to give away would be considered infringement. While it is unlikely the pattern designer could get
a copyright registration on the pattern,
it is best not to engage in this activity.
But again Janet Jo Smith gets lost in her misinterpretations. If the guild has purchased a pattern and makes a quilt from that pattern,
no permission is required from the pattern designer. As we covered in ¶ 13, the magazine has no proprietary rights
to the pattern. She keeps repeating the pattern designer mantra in hopes that the flock will follow. Baaaaaah!
While the courts have held that publishing on a web site is similar to publishing in print, the same copyright rules apply. Consider this: why would a web site
publish a pattern and then say you cannot use it? It is there, for all to see, and easily copy, but you cannot use it? Then why post it on the internet?
People post things on the internet for others to see and use. Only an idiot would post a pattern and tell people they cannot use it.
She then repeats the conundrum about public display. You bought the pattern, you made the quilt, you have a right to publicly display that quilt.
And why would you not be able to show it to friends and family and others? By her logic, if someone's granddaughter colored a page from a coloring
book of the Disney Princesses and grandma then tacked that colored page to the refrigerator, she is now guilty of copyright infringement because
grandma did not get permission from Disney to publicly display the copyrighted coloring book page. Right.
And who appointed her Chief Of Copyright Police? As she states, you do not know the facts nor are you affected. Getting involved as she
suggests leaves you open to all sorts of grief especially if there is no infringement and you hint that there is. Her previous advice is so pathetically wrong
so why would one take it now.
General? The advice seemed awfully specific to us.
Janet Jo Smith claims she is an attorney however the Colorado Bar Association does not list her as an attorney. We cannot find a law firm that lists her
as an attorney in their employ. Perhaps she has attended law school and perhaps she once was a licensed attorney but that does not
mean she has an intimate knowledge of copyright law and its application. Considering her self-serving misinterpretation of copyright law
we can see why she is not making a living as an attorney.
She is a quilter. We are guessing her bias is that she designs and make patterns. Her web site, www.dyesmithy.com/, mentions that she
is an attorney but provides little else about her qualifications. Like other designers, she reads and interprets the law to fit her beliefs and her desires.
She is wrong: dead wrong.