Tonight we’re poking around a bit under the U.S. Copyright Office website.
Oh look, they have an Frequently Asked Questions section. I’m sure that this will contain pertinent information for my property rights essay. Let’s take a look at question number 58:
How do I protect my sighting of Elvis?
Copyright law does not protect sightings. However, copyright law will protect your photo (or other depiction) of your sighting of Elvis. Just send it to us with a form VA application and the $30 filing fee. No one can lawfully use your photo of your sighting, although someone else may file his own photo of his sighting. Copyright law protects the original photograph, not the subject of the photograph.
Now you know. And knowing is half the battle.