Squaring tattoo art and copyright law initially begs the question, to whom does a tattoo and the rights that attach to this form of artistic expression belong to? Initially, the two options that make the most logical sense are that the rights belong to either the tattoo artist or to the individual actually set to wear the ink for the rest of their life. The fundamental principle supporting the proposition that tattoo artists own their designs, is captured within the foundations of intellectual property and copyright law more broadly.
This post was originally published on the Cardozo Arts & Entertainment Law Journal website on April 26, 2020. The original post can be accessed via the Archived Link button above.
Ruby, Ethan, "NBA 2K Must Pay to Play: How America’s Copyright Regime Can Better Protect Tattoo Artists From Losing Control Over The Reproduction of Their Work in Video Games" (2020). AELJ Blog. 242.