Copyright – What Is It And How Does It Protect You
Copyright describes the legal rights of the owner of any type of intellectual property, protecting it from being used, duplicated, or adapted for personal or professional gain. For example, copyrights for a movie, book, song, painting, or image. Anyone who uses copyrighted material must give credit to the original owner and can’t claim the intellectual property as their own, or adapt, adjust or sell it for any reason.
How Does Copyright Protect The Owner?
Only the original creators of the product or content can authorize its use. The copyright law is set for a limited number of years, after which it must be renewed to maintain exclusive rights or made public.
Where Does The Copyright Law Not Apply?
Copyright cannot be used for short phrases, words, or functional things such as buildings, business, operational procedures, scientific discoveries, etc.
To qualify for copyright protection, the work must be in a tangible or physical form. For example, an author cannot obtain a copyright for a book he’s thought of and not written. Only after he writes and publishes the book does he gets the copyright for it.
What Rights Do You Get Under Copyright Law?
Copyright help the owner protect:
- The content from being reproduced in copies and phonorecords
- Against his work being sold, leased, or rented without permission
- Prevent unauthorized public performance of movies, music, literacy work, plays, etc
- His work from being publicly displayed, for example, paintings, sculptures, choreography, and more
- Audio works being digitally transmitted on air or through recording
It’s important to note that copyright does not apply in cases of independent creation. For example, another individual creates a similar painting or song without having seen or heard it.
Why Register For Copyright?
An owner is eligible for copyright as soon as his work is in a tangible form. For example, putting your book on paper or saving it digitally on a drive. But officially registering for the copyright law provides legal rights and benefits.
If the owner’s work is used without permission, he can sue for statutory damages and attorney fees. But it’s essential to first register before having the ability to seek compensation for copyright infringement.
Having legal copyright laws is enough of a deterrent for others to take a step back before using another person’s work. The damage compensation for the person stealing the work is usually higher than the damage incurred. For example, if someone copies pictures worth $20 on their website or book, the damage would the same amount. But he will also have to pay for your attorney fee and his own, increasing the amount considerably.
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