Copyright is a form of intellectual property law that grants authors, artists, and inventors exclusive rights to their original works. It covers both published and unpublished creations, including books, music, artwork, software, photographs, videos and other creative works. Copyright protection gives copyright owners the right to control how others use their work.
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Origin of copyright
The idea of protecting the intellectual property of creators dates back to ancient times, but the modern concept of copyright originated during the Renaissance in Europe.
In the seventeenth century, scientists and artists began to publish their works more widely and distribute printed matter internationally. This led to the need to protect their works from piracy and exploitation without permission. In 1710, the British Parliament passed the Copyright Act 1710, also known as the Anne’s Printing Act , which established the first modern copyright by granting authors the exclusive right to publish and sell their works for a period of 14 years.
Over time, copyright has developed and adapted to technology and changes in the way creative works are produced and consumed. Today, copyright is regulated internationally through international treaties and conventions, such as the Berne Convention for the Protection of Literary and Artistic Works and the Copyright Agreement of the World Trade Organization. These treaties establish common rules and principles to protect copyright around the world.
Types of copywright
There are several types of copyright that protect different types of works and different aspects of them. Some of the most common types of copyright are:
- Text copyrights: protect literary, artistic and scientific works, such as books, poetry, films, plays and music. Copyright grants the creator the exclusive right to reproduce, distribute, and publicly communicate the work.
- Copyright of audiovisual works: protect films and other audiovisual works, such as documentaries and television programs. These rights include the right to reproduce, distribute, and publicly communicate the work.
- Copyright of musical works: protect musical works and song lyrics. These rights include the right to reproduce and distribute the work, as well as the right to perform it in public.
- Artwork copyright: protects visual works of art, such as paintings, sculptures, and photographs. These rights include the right to reproduce and distribute the work, as well as the right to display it in public.
- Copyright of architectural works: protect the designs and plans of buildings and structures. These rights include the right to reproduce and distribute the plans, as well as the right to construct the structure according to design.
- Database copyrights: protect databases, which are collections of information organized in a structured way. Database copyright includes the right to extract and reuse the information contained in them.
- Copyright of software: protect computer programs and their source codes. These rights include the right to reproduce and distribute the software, as well as the right to modify and use it in the creation of other programs.