A legal method by which monopoly rights, usually called intellectual property, are preserved for purposes of financial gain. Copyright is simply the state-granted privilege to prevent others making copies. Copyright attempts to preserve authority over the consumption of various media with the owner of the copyright license. Copyright covers a wide range of arts, media, products and services including literature, music, movies and software.
Copyright, like patents and trademarks, benefits only those who can enforce the related legislation. The Berne Convention was responsible for creating international standards for copyright protection. Copyright laws are often used to sue users who infringe, internet hosts serving unauthorised copyrighted material, the creators of file sharing programs and even internet service providers.
A copyright message, such as the following, may nor may not accompany copyrighted material.
Copyright. © All rights reserved.
Copyright includes all of the basic legal rights afforded, including the rights to determine or authorise distribution, details of derivatives, permission for a public performance or public display, and the copying of work in totality. The right to receive revenue by the collection of royalty fees, etc. is undergoing great change as digital technology develops. Politicians and interested industry groups, such as the RIAA have recently attempted to create and implement new laws such as the DMCA that protect against newer forms of piracy.
In an effort to "protect" aboriginal artwork, Australia has some of the worst and most restrictive copyright laws in existence. Since 1994 it has been illegal for non-aboriginal people to create an image that even resembles authentic indigenous designs.
- What is Copyright Protection?
- Libresociety.org Theories of Copyright and the Commons
- Copyright Myths
- United States Copyright Laws
- United States DMCA - full text of the act in HTML format
- The End of the Information Age - analysis of the history of Copyright policy and its impact on society
- The Very Secret Battle of Bob Kolody vs. Coca-Cola - The story begins with a major advertising agency stealing an independent consultant's story-boards and culminates with allegations that Coke filed fraudulent copyright applications and enacted a high-level form of espionage against their legal opponent. What's more, the federal judge in the case has been accused of having links to organized crime. Tantalizing? You bet. And were only getting started...