In determining ownership:
- Law sets the defaults
- Policies clarify and apply the law
- Contracts transfer rights
Who owns works created at the University? Do you? Does the University?
Does someone else? What if many people contribute to the work? Does
everyone own it?
There are two ways to determine ownership in a project
- Set up a project with written agreements through
UW TechTransfer Digital Ventures so that ownership is where you want it
to be, or
- Do nothing and let the law tell you where it is. This means that
if you don't do anything to structure ownership of a work, as
soon as the work is created ownership will be established according
to law and the owner may not be who you think it is or who it
Applying the Law
Applying the law can be complicated. The law considers who authored
the work and whether the work was prepared for an employer. If more
than one author is involved, it becomes necessary to consider how
those involved intended for their work to be merged.
It is also necessary to consider any contracts or other obligations
related to the creation of the work, and whether the work incorporates
existing copyright material.
Any and all of these variables can have an impact on ownership.