Protections Given to Copyright Holders

Nov 05

Copyright infringement arises when a person other than the copyright holder copies the “expression” of a certain work. When explained further, this means that although the information or the idea behind the work is not protected by law the way it is expressed can be protected, and can occur even when someone does not copy the work in exact detail. If there is significant evidence of the infringing work being “substantially similar” to the original copyrighted work, then there is copyright infringement.

Copyright holders should understand what rights the law provided them over their work. Copyright does not only mean they only have the rights to reproduce their work. According to the website of Gagnon, Peacock & Vereeke, P.C., copyright law provides owners a number of rights, and each of their rights can be sold or assigned individually. If one of these rights is used without the permission of the copyright owner, then copyright infringement is made. Among the many rights of a copyright holder are:

  1. Right to Distribution – gives the owner the right to distribute their work, through sale, rental, lending or lease.
  2. Right to Reproduce the Work – provides the right for owners to copy, transcribe, duplicate, or reproduce their work in any fixed form. If anyone other than the owner reproduce and resells the work without the owner’s expressed permission then copyright infringement is made.
  3. Right to Derivative Works – grants the owner the right to modify their work in order to create a new one. A derivative work is something that is made based on an already existing work made by the copyright owner.
  4. Public Display Right – gives the property owner the right to publicly show a copy of the work through hanging it in public, putting it on a website/film, or other ways of transmitting it to the public. Copyright infringement occurs if someone without the owners’ permission publicly displays the work.
  5. Public Performance Right – the owner’s right to dance, recite, play, act, and show their work to the public of through other mediums of transmission.

If you think someone has committed a copyright infringement regarding your work, then it would be good to consult with a Fort Worth copyright lawyer to help determine your next course of action. You can protect yourself and your work by registering it to the US Copyright Office, and this would allow you to sue anyone who uses or copies your work without your permission.

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