New Expressions: 3D Printing & the Changing IP Landscape

Level: Advanced
Runtime: 93 minutes
Recorded Date: December 15, 2017
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1:00 pm - 2:30 pm
  • Current state of the art
  • Possible legal issues at each step
  • Exclusive rights under Copyright Act
  • Copyrightability of 3D-printed objects
  • Limitations on exclusive rights
  • Secondary liability for copyright infringement
  • Possiblities for licensing
  • Summary
Runtime: 1 hour and 33 minutes
Recorded: December 15, 2017


This program will review the current state of the art and explore many of the copyright issues that 3D printing and scanning may implicate, including the useful article doctrine; the derivative work right; fair use; secondary liability; the anticircumvention and safe harbor provisions of the Digital Millennium Copyright Act; and recent Supreme Court cases on design patent protection and the scope of copyright in 3D objects.

Until now, a company's product cycle involved a familiar timeline of discrete milestones: design, prototyping, production, launch, supply chain management, etc. But 3D printing and scanning are transforming how businesses bring their products to market, by collapsing these distinct phases into one fluid spectrum. Because 3D printing and scanning blur the lines between application and expression, these technologies raise a host of IP legal issues. There are few guideposts that can serve as reliable indicators of how existing law will treat these innovations, however it is not clear which practitioners will be liable—the printer, the seller, the manufacturer, etc.

This program was recorded on December 15th, 2017.

Provided By

American Bar Association


Armen Nercessian

Fenwick & West LLP

Armen Nercessian focuses his practice on litigation and handles litigation matters for technology-based companies.

While in law school, Armen was a member of the Moot Court Board and served as a law clerk for the Orleans Public Defenders office. He is a member of the engineering honors societies Tau Beta Pi and Eta Kappa Nu.?

Michael Weinberg

General Counsel

Michael is the General Counsel and IP Expert at Shapeways.

He received his J.D. from The George Washington University Law School and his B.A. from Claremont McKenna College. Michael was born and raised in and around Washington, DC.

Andrew Gass

Latham & Watkins LLP

Andrew Gass is a nationally recognized thought leader on emerging issues in copyright law, antitrust law, and the intersection between the two. At Latham & Watkins, he is a partner and member of the firm’s award-winning global Antitrust & Competition Practice. At the UC Berkeley School of Law, he has taught both the basic Copyright Law course and an advanced seminar on Copyright, Competition & Technology in the nation’s top-ranked IP law program. In the American Bar Association, he is Chair of the IP Section’s Committee on Copyright and New Technologies, having previously served as Chair of the Committee on Music, Sound Recordings, and Performing Artists.

In private practice, Mr. Gass represents technology companies, broadcasters, and other clients in high-stakes litigation with competitors, suppliers, and regulators. He also counsels companies of all sizes on matters implicating copyright, antitrust, and other regulatory considerations, from product design through licensing and commercialization, merger and acquisition, and beyond.

Mr. Gass has been honored as one of five “Rising Star” competition law attorneys under age 40 by the publication Law360. His work has been lauded for its “originality,” “leadership,” and “impact” by the Financial Times, for “saving [clients] millions of dollars."

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