How long must something be fixed to be able to be covered under copyright? In a static display at the Eiffel Tower, I can kind of see the difference in the fireworks issue but may parts of the display are dynamic with constant changes, just as a firework would be seen and then it's gone.
but as to something being in a fixed form:
is a spontaneous speech protected under copyright protections? or is it only after it is recorded, either on some audio medium or transcribed? If I remember your teachings, it is the latter.
The Copyright Act says that a work is fixed when "its embodiment in a copy or phonorecord ... is sufficiently permanent or stable to permit it to be perceived, reproduced, or otherwise communicated for a period of more than transitory duration," but what a transitory duration
would be is not defined. Therefore, it has been left to the courts to determine what is, and is not, a transitory duration.
One of the several cases where transitory duration was an issue is The Cartoon Network LP, LLP v CSC Holdings, Inc
, No. 07-1480 & 07-1511 (2d Cir, Aug 4, 2008). Here is a link (scroll to "The Buffer Data," page 4): http://cyber.law.harvard.edu/peple/tfisher/IP/2008 Cartoon Abridged.pdf
Here also is a link to a Copyright Office DMCA Section 104 Report, which addresses transitory duration (see 110.12): http://www.copyright.gov/reports/studies/dmca/dmca_study.html
As to spontaneous speech as opposed to scripted speech, spontaneous speech is not protected unless the words spoken are fixed in some way (on paper or through a sound recording or a videotape).
so what happens as the tree changes with age? Is it no longer the image registered and as such, no longer protected under TM law? I suppose a limited amount of change would be not great enough to change it such that it is no longer recognizable as "the tree" but if it split or lost a major limb, would that be enough alteration to remove it from TM protection?
When the tree changes with age or loses a limb or two, I imagine it would no longer resemble the trademark - although similarities could still be enough to infringe on trademark rights. And it would be the use
of any photo of the tree more than the photo-taking itself that would give rise to trademark issues. In fact, the taking of photos in general is not an issue as often as what is done with the photographs once taken.