University of Massachusetts Amherst

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Services

All services for the creative arts are free of charge and you will retain full ownership of your scholarly works.  The Technology Transfer Office provides information, assistance and support.

Examples of the kind of help we can provide are provided below.  If you don’t see what you need on the list, please ask!  We can help in almost any situation.

Copyrights

  • General information and advice
  • Registration assistance, including serial registrations for evolving works
  • Information on proper copyright notices, use of ©
  • Obtaining permission to include third-party photos, diagrams, etc. in authored works (frequently many such permissions are needed)
  • Help finding publishers, distributors, galleries, supply houses including contacting such parties and seeking their interest
  • Business advice on publishing agreements, distribution agreements, joint development agreements, editing agreements, gallery agreements, speaker’s agreements, and other contracts with outside entities for services, distribution, performance or display
  • Information about organizations that collect and distribute royalties including the American Society of Composers, Authors and Publishers (ASCAP), Broadcast Music, Inc. (BMI), and SoundExchange
  • Explanation of ways infringement can be dealt with
  • Referral and collaboration with the library’s copyright attorney, the UMass trademark licensing director, and/or outside counsel

Trademarks

(e.g., book names, artwork titles, names of audiovisual works)

  • Advice on selecting strong trademarks (including information about the various types; descriptive, suggestive, arbitrary, and fanciful)
  • Help deciding if multiple or sequential marks are needed
  • Information about the protection of trademarks under state law and under federal law
  • Information about the proper use of TM, SM and ®
  • Searching the U.S. Patent and Trademark database and other sources to help you determine if desired marks are available, in use, or may cause “likelihood of confusion”
  • Information on how to file your own trademark registration, or referral to local lawyers who can file it for you
  • Help understanding “cease and desist” letters, and the ways creators and businesses deal with them

Confidentiality Agreements

  • Information about how they are used, typical contract terms and generally recognized exceptions from what is “confidential information”
  • Help in deciding if you want to accept or disclose confidential information, and if so, how long confidentiality should last
  • Referral to local attorneys who can provide legal advice or negotiate terms for you

Consulting Agreements

  • Help setting fees, describing services and defining deliverables
  • Information about common mistakes and pitfalls
  • Referral to local attorneys who can draft agreements, provide legal advice or negotiate terms for you

Licensing Agreements

  • Advice on business issues, royalty rates, and negotiation techniques
  • Information on how complex business arrangements might be organized
  • Continuing advice throughout the licensing process
  • Referral to local attorneys who can draft agreements, provide legal advice or negotiate terms for you

Starting a Company

  • Advice and guidance on defining products and services, target markets
  • Help evaluating market size, likely market penetration, revenue potential
  • Help calculating likely prices, cost-of-goods, overhead costs, profit margins
  • Information about different types of business structures
  • Referral to mentors who can provide advice and guidance at no cost
  • Referral to potential business partners
  • Referrals to attorneys who can handle the legal aspects
  • Advice on how to balance partner’s shares in the business with their responsibilities, and how to assure that receiving that share is dependent on their level of effort and quality of performance
  • Access to UMass Amherst start-up company resources, including guidance from an “Entrepreneur in Residence” and possible start-up funds.

How to Request Services

Call or email us.

Program Manager Lyne Laliberte will be glad to hear from you, please call her at (413) 545-1062, or email her at laliberte@research.umass.edu.

You can reach Bob MacWright, the Director of the Technology Transfer Office, at (413) 545-1587, or macwright@umass.edu

Fill out our brief form

We all get tired of forms, so this one is only two pages long; and you can leave as many things blank as you wish - we’ll get that information later.  If it takes you more than 10 minutes to fill out the form, please call us, you are going too far! Download the form now.

Send the form to Program Manager Lyne Laliberte via campus mail, or scan and email it to her at laliberte@research.umass.edu.

Don’t hesitate.  If in doubt, contact us.

Some of these issues can be complex and confusing, and sometimes you think you know the answer, but aren’t sure.  We can help with issues big or small, and if you already have something figured out, we will be glad to put your mind at ease.