If I copyright my artwork and it has an original saying within the art piece, is the saying itself copyrighted?

Asked on October 18, 2014 under Business Law, District of Columbia


SJZ, Member, New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 6 years ago | Contributor

Yes, an original statement or phrase is itself copyrightable, regardless of whether it is embedded within artwork or otherwise; furthermore, the copyright on the artwork includes the right to control or forbid the making of "derivative works," including taking pieces of the work--like a saying from the work--and using those pieces.

IMPORTANT NOTICE: The Answer(s) provided above are for general information only. The attorney providing the answer was not serving as the attorney for the person submitting the question or in any attorney-client relationship with such person. Laws may vary from state to state, and sometimes change. Tiny variations in the facts, or a fact not set forth in a question, often can change a legal outcome or an attorney's conclusion. Although AttorneyPages.com has verified the attorney was admitted to practice law in at least one jurisdiction, he or she may not be authorized to practice law in the jurisdiction referred to in the question, nor is he or she necessarily experienced in the area of the law involved. Unlike the information in the Answer(s) above, upon which you should NOT rely, for personal advice you can rely upon we suggest you retain an attorney to represent you.