Intellectual Property Policy
This document defines the official policy of AIM Language Learning Inc. (“AIM”) regarding copyrights, trademarks, and other rights as they pertain to translations and adaptations of existing AIM Materials and the creation of Derivative Works therefrom.
A “Contribution” is any translation or adaptation of the AIM Materials or a Derivative Work, submitted to AIM for approval.
A “Contributor” is a person who submits a Contribution to AIM.
A “Derivative Work” is any work derived from existing AIM Materials.
The “AIM Materials” comprise all literary, dramatic, artistic and musical works that form the body of AIM’s language learning materials, including, without limitation, the teaching guides, DVDs, student guides, CDs, posters, and other materials, whether in printed or electronic form, as they exist from time to time.
Legal Background: Copyrights and Trademarks
Under the laws of most countries and current international treaties, authors obtain numerous rights in the works they produce automatically upon producing them. These rights include copyrights and related moral rights.
Copyright law not only ensures that the owner of a work receives compensation but it also allows the owner to prohibit others from using the work in many different ways: reproducing it, publishing it, performing or displaying it in public, adapting it, translating it and creating Derivative Works based upon it. Of course, instead of prohibiting those activities, thecopyright owner may choose to license the activities, in exchange for royalties and/or an assignment of copyright in the translated, adapted or derived work
If an author produces a work within the scope of his or her employment, the company employing the author automatically owns the copyright in the work; otherwise, a company may acquire such copyright through an assignment from the author. In the case of AIM, all the copyright works that comprise the AIM Materials are either owned by or have been assigned to AIM.
Trademarks and logos, even if not registered, are protected at common law and in most civil law jurisdictions by laws that prohibit purveyors from “passing off” their goods or services as the products of another person. These laws evolved from situations where unscrupulous individuals would produce inferior goods intended to fool the general public into believing their origin was a reputable merchant. Trademarks protect the so-called “goodwill” built up by a company that has produced a consistently high quality product or service.
From this general body of law arose the notion of registering trademarks. Registration establishes a presumption that the trademark holder is the rightful source of the particular goods or services. Registration is on a country-by-country basis and AIM has not registered its marks in every country of the world. However, AIM’s priority right to register has been established by making its program and the AIM Materials known in a large number of countries. Such “making known” preempts others from registering AIM’s established trademark in those countries.
Purpose of this Policy
AIM does not want to discourage resourceful and creative individuals from bringing value-added materials to the existing body of AIM works. In fact, it would be a monumental task for the originators of the AIM Materials to translate, adapt and create Derivative Works for every new market. However, AIM must ensure that Contributions do not denigrate the goodwill that AIM has so carefully nurtured through strict quality controls and high standards for consistency across the AIM brand. This can only be accomplished through the vigilant enforcement and defense of its copyrights and trademarks.
How this Policy works
Normally, AIM will solicit Contributions from authors. On occasion, AIM will authorize authors who bring to AIM timely proposals to produce Contributions for AIM, subject of course to AIM’s satisfaction that the author has a proven track record, samples of the author’s writing meet AIM’s high standards and the author can meet delivery requirements.
In order for any translations, adaptations and Derivative Works to be accepted as Contributions to the Materials, Contributors must assign the copyright in their Contributions to AIM In certain instances, AIM is prepared to pay a creative fee and/or a royalty in consideration of the grant of copyright and in recognition of the effort and expertise brought to the table by the Contributor. Such compensation is negotiable depending on the extent of the Contribution and its value in the marketplace.
Contributors must also accept that their Contributions will be reviewed on an ongoing basis during the creative process for two reasons: (1) to ensure that the Contributor does not waste time on a Contribution that might ultimately be rejected; and (2) to provide guidelines to the Contributor throughout the process so that the resulting Contribution conforms with the standards of quality and consistency that are the hallmark of the AIM Materials.
Each Contributor signs a short contract covering the terms and conditions of the engagement.
Contributors whose Contributions are approved by AIM will be accorded reasonable credit for their Contributions. A Derivative Work will clearly refer to the original work on which it is based.
Material and resources owned and copyrighted by AIM Language Learning Inc. must not be posted on Youtube™, Vimeo™, School web pages, blogs, portals, and/or other public internet sites, without a prior licensing agreement from AIM. This is in direct contravention of copyright laws. Please contact enquiries@aimlanguagelearning.
Updates to this Policy
The Contributor recognizes that over time, this Policy will need corrections and updating, and acknowledges that AIM has the right to issue revised versions of this Policy at any time, and without prior notice. AIM will post notice of new versions of this Policy on this website. Any changes in Policy will not affect previously approved Contributions.