Editor's Note: Today we are grateful to have a post from Kristen Koepsel. Kirsten M. Koepsel, JD, LLM analyses and writes on the intersection of agriculture, intellectual property, and animal law issues. She may be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org. We are grateful Kristen for allowing us to include a post on this important developing topic that includes not only agriculture but other areas as you will see.
Until a few months ago, a farmer asked the question, “who owns your tractor or any of your other agriculture machinery?” would most likely have answered, “me.” But a recent submission by John Deere (the brand name of Deere & Company) to the U.S. Copyright Office provides a different answer: “In the absence of an express written license in conjunction with the purchase of the vehicle, the vehicle owner receives an implied license for the life of the vehicle to operate the vehicle, subject to any warranty limitations, disclaimers or other contractual limitations in the sales contract or documentation.” Several news articles picked up on the “John Deere ownership” comment, including Wired Magazine. But how does ownership of a tractor and copyright come to intersect?Read More