Innovative custom software has become a tool for success in today`s economy. The software developers and software they have created are available in all shapes and sizes. The developer could be a friend or relative of the family. The developer could be requested by Craigslist. Companies might simply be attracted to the developer`s website, which offers a number of software development services. Once the developer is configured, the software type can be configured in different ways. The software can be alone. Or it could be an add-on or an adaptation of existing platforms like Salesforce.com or Magenta. If the parties consider that copyright remains with the developer, a license is the most appropriate mechanism for specifying the respective rights and responsibilities of the parties. Copyright licenses are powerful tools that can be used to confer a wide range of rights on the licensee that may correspond to the practical equivalent of ownership if the parties wish to do so.
A copyright holder may grant a licence or all of the exclusive rights conferred by copyright law and the parties may contract a large number of additional provisions. Licenses may or may not be exclusive, although in this context the vast majority of licences are generally exclusive. NO: If the answer is no, the analysis – no "work for rent" for your business. (Houston, you may have a problem) Although the stanacard series of cases seems to support the belief that most software development projects might be eligible for treatment for rental work, and although the logic supporting its results seems sound, the fact remains that most cases have a very low precedent. In Stanacard, the Tribunal ultimately found that work-for-hire was not applicable to a summary decision, as there is insufficient evidence that the parties intended to produce the software as an interim before the plant was established. Id. at 23. In Logicom, the court found sufficient evidence to support a finding that the work qualified as compiling to complete an application, but stated that "there may be a time in this case, when the components of the computer program need to be examined and analyzed further to remove all items that are excluded from protection." In iXL, the court`s discussions on ownership of the code were part of an independent licensee`s referral proceeding against the client, which was dismissed.
Finally, the Mediachase court found that the software was classified as interim and rendered a summary judgment to the client on that basis, but it also found that the applicant entrusted the work to the client independently and also found that the independent contractor was in fact an employee of the alleged client (so that the work did not have to fall into one of the nine categories of work). Before the end of this contract, all finished projects and materials are handed over to the client. These include mockups, frames, sketches, graphics, electronic files, codes, repositories, login information, software, hardware and services purchased. There are several reasons why software developers and their customers should think carefully before including the language "work for hire" in software development contracts. In many cases, the restrictive language of copyright law may render this language legally ineffective in transferring copyright to the party purchasing the software.