The laws of the US protect the creators of “original works of authorship,” which include literary, theatrical, musical, artistic, architectural, and some other intellectual works, from unauthorized use and dissemination. “Public domain” refers to intellectual property not protected by copyright laws. It relates to both unpublished and published works. The vast majority of pre-1920s works are not copyrighted. Let’s know about copyright law and how it is essential for your sites, logos, scripts, books, etc.
Copyright: a timeline of its development
- The first law passed in 1790
- After the death of the author or creator, 1976 copyright law extended copyright for 50 years.
- After signing the “Sonny Bono Copyright Extension Act” into law, President Clinton, on October 27, 1998, granted copyrights in the United States equal protection to those given in Europe. For the first time, copyright protection has been extended beyond the creator’s life by an additional 50 years. Working for a living now has a new lifespan of 95 years instead of the previous 75 years.
Does copyright last forever?
- The works of the author’s lifetime plus 70 years, starting in January 1978.
- Work for a fee for 95 years
As long as it’s legal, you can use
“Fair Use” is an exception to copyright laws for educational and scholarly purposes. Fair use allows people to take restricted portions from works for articles, criticisms, and other public services. Copyrighted works, even parodies, are generally safe from infringement. A standard extract is not permitted by law, and principles on fair use are a bit vague. Courts assess the aim of the use of copyrighted work, the financial impact the usage has on the holder of the copyright, the extent to which an article was extracted, and the character of the work which was copyrighted when deciding whether a breach has occurred. It’s possible that republishing a photo from your website could constitute copyright infringement, but it’s not possible to copy and paste an entire paragraph from a book that you sell.
Act of the Digital Millennium
Users who infringe on copyrights are not held responsible under the Digital Millennium Copyright Act as long as the material is taken down. You could still be infringing on someone else’s copyright even if YouTube or Facebook allows you to post something on your small business page. Users on the Internet believe they can avoid copyright infringement by stating that no copyright infringement was intended when posting online. For instance, YouTube users routinely re-post music with a disclaimer saying they’re not breaking copyright rules.
So if you have any website, it becomes essential to protect it from global theft. Register your copyright with the trusted platform and protect your site’s logos, books, scripts, training manuals, etc.