The must-read from yesterday is Michael Dean’s look at the actual court documents:
Although today publishers are required to show contractual proof of work-for-hire arrangements, there was no such requirement during this period of Kirby’s freelance work for Marvel. In the absence of a contract, Judge McMahon relied on the instance-and-expense test. Under this test, a work-for-hire relationship is said to exist if a creator produces work at the behest of a publisher/employer and is compensated by the publisher/employer for the work. Toberoff argued that Kirby had generated ideas and concepts beyond what he had been specifically assigned to create, but McMahon concluded Marvel’s editorial supervision of Kirby’s work and its page-rate payments to him were sufficient for the relationship to pass the instance-and-expense test.
Much more that everyone should read before making uninformed statements.
ALSO, Spanish cartoonist Pepo Perez has his own comments on creator ownership battles, here in the Google translation. That’s makes for some awkwardness, but also some great stuff.
I keep reading some arguments on the case heirs v. Disney Kirby, American and Spanish forums, and I get the smoke ears.
Heidi MacDonald is the founder and editor in chief of The Beat. In the past, she worked for Disney, DC Comics, Fox and Publishers Weekly. She can be heard regularly on the More To Come Podcast. She likes coffee, cats and noble struggle.