Copyrights Presentation


Copyrightsprotect authors of “original works” whether they are published or unpublished. The 1976 Copyright Act generally gives the copyright owners the exclusive right to:

→ Reproduce

→ Prepare derivative works

→ Make and distribute copies

→ Perform or display the copyrighted work publicly.

The copyright protects the form of expression rather than the subject matter of the writing or image.

Copyrightdoes not cover function or independent development.

What Is It?

• Protects original, creative expressionsof ideas fixed in tangible form, e.g.:

→ Software, paintings, statues, recordedmusic, drawings, advertising, books, writings, performances

• Does NOT protect:

→ Ideas, procedures, mere facts, recipes, function

→ Independently developed works

→ Useful or functional characteristics of a work

How Long Do Rights Last?

Known Author

→ author’s life plus 70 years (if created after 1977)

Anonymous, or Work for Hire

→ shorter of 95 years from publication or 120 years from creation (if created after 1977)

Fair Use?

⚆ Purpose of Use: commercial or nonprofit? New expression or value, educational, parody?

⚆ Nature of Work: customary to use portions? fact or fiction?

⚆ Amount Copied: substantial amount?

⚆ Market Effect: reduces potential value?


• Notice is not required, but still good to protect against an “innocent infringer” defense during calculation of damages.

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