Talk:Copyright law of the United States

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edit·history·watch·refresh Stock post message.svg To-do list for Copyright law of the United States:

Here are some tasks awaiting attention:
  • Expand : rights and limitations specific to each category of work; categories and limitations for each exclusive right
  • Update : Veeck v. Southern Building Code Congress, about the copyright status of privately-written standards which are enacted into law (as opposed to the copyright status of law written by governmental agencies) (some info at Building code)
  • Other : reorganize substantive law around a Protectibility, Rights, Infringing those rights, and Defenses

1962-1972 Copyright acts[edit]

As there appears to be no mention of the copyright acts enacted between 1962 and1974 (as plotted on Bell's graph Expansion of U.S. Copyright Term), I added a brief sentence and citation about these acts. MXYXYM (talk) 01:04, 23 October 2011 (UTC)

Ambiguity in ownership section[edit]

"Copyright owners are required to actively enforce rights."
I just had a discussion with someone who took it to mean owners lose their copyright if they don't enforce it (which is a rumor I've heard before, but seems complete nonsense). Checking through the history, it seems to be a rewording of
"A person whose copyright has been violated (infringed upon) may pursue relief. These remedies, however, require the copyright holder to actively enforce his or her rights. There is no "copyright police" that enforces copyright without the right holder complaining."
This is not clear at all from the new sentence. Perhaps it could be re-reworded or further explained to prevent such misunderstandings? VDZ (talk) 23:55, 7 February 2012 (UTC)

I wish clarification help in article and more emphasis on what is legal[edit]

"The Congress shall have Power ... To promote the Progress of Science and useful Arts,"

Is this means all humanists (that is not science) teaching books, videos and DVDs:

psychology, psychiatry, history, religion, politics, sexology, law and all social preaching, language learning materials are not copyrighted also because they are neither art nor science?

[teaching is not art, science is only: math, physic, engineering, chemistry, technology and maybe medical teaching is science but it is at least science of all sciences,]

[art is beautiful music, beautiful objects, beautiful stories even when they are ugly they need to be beauty or in pursuit of beauty, ugly sounds are not art, obscene things are not art. They cannot also be boring or ordinary.]

Object and learning materials that are ergonomic, are neither art nor science this is just putting things in order.

Are gossip material copyright free, even when they are decent because it is neither science, nor art?

Is my understanding of science/art versus humanistic material in line with constitutional law or not?

How constitution/law declares science?

I recall definition of science as discovering NEW laws of nature and NEW ways of utilization of them.

In light of such definition even technology is not science, because it is about utilization of YET KNOWN(to the science) laws of nature and perfecting and developing (by means of engineering) YET KNOWN(to the science) ways of their utilization .

{And CopyRight is given To promote the Progress constituted by Change and involving NEW things.}

Can history, teaching philosophy of evaluating testimonies and evidences in lawsuit and criminology {spiritual thing based on free will} be accounted by extension as science?

Does authority have constitutional right to grant copyright outside of constitution provision?

What if they do it outside constitution provision?

I would like to appeal to Wikipedia authors for such clarification. Especially the detailed use of definitions of science and art.

And what about Videos of sport meeting ?

And by The way:

"by securing for limited Times to Authors and Inventors the exclusive Right"

Does it allow copyright after death? [no rights for inheritances of such right for progeny of Authors and Inventors] and what if producers are concerns and corporations who never die but only bankrupt or undergo fusion? — Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 02:43, 24 May 2012 (UTC)

Copyright and translations[edit]

Apparently translations do get copyrighted at least in some circumstances. What are those? Palosirkka (talk) 11:05, 16 July 2012 (UTC)

A translation is one kind of a derivative work, see definition of "derivative work," § 101. To the extent a derivative work amounts to an original work of authorship, it's subject to copyright, § 103. TJRC (talk) 23:25, 16 July 2012 (UTC)


"While copyright in the United States automatically attaches upon the creation of an original work of authorship"

Here is a source for that statement.

"Your work is under copyright protection the moment it is created and fixed in a tangible form that it is perceptible either directly or with the aid of a machine or device.

When is my work protected? Your work is under copyright protection the moment it is created and fixed in a tangible form that it is perceptible either directly or with the aid of a machine or device.

Do I have to register with your office to be protected? No. In general, registration is voluntary. Copyright exists from the moment the work is created." — Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 21:15, 6 September 2013 (UTC)

Copyright Law, Second Ed. (Robert Gorman)[edit]

Prof. Robert Gorman's Copyright Treatise for the Federal Judicial Center is an excellent free reference. Teachingaway (talk) 15:18, 3 October 2014 (UTC)


Tag reason: The reference directly contracts this, providing examples of such sound recordings in the PD.--Elvey (talk) 22:34, 9 April 2014 (UTC)

I think that sentence is saying that we can't count on recordings being PD. I have no info on this subject, though. -- AimlessWonderer (talk) 06:15, 19 October 2014 (UTC)


Does Copyright Law of the USA had powerful for any explains of a science ideas in the Wikipedia and in all electronicall nets which had powerful of the Law USA?--Alex Sazonov (talk) 06:46, 18 April 2014 (UTC)

See WP:COPYRIGHT. The issue has been thoroughly explored, that section describes what's meaningful for Wikipedia editors. Tarl.Neustaedter (talk) 22:41, 20 April 2014 (UTC)

Willful damanges $300,000?[edit]

According to this source damages range from $750 to $30,000 not $300,000. 17 U.S. Code § 504 - Remedies for infringement: Damages and profits (talk) 16:08, 23 May 2014 (UTC)

a) consult a lawyer
b) That paragraph does not refer to willful violation. See subparagraph (d) lower down where it talks about increasing damages. I don't know if there are additional multipliers available elsewhere or in case law. As I mentioned, consult a lawyer.
Tarl.Neustaedter (talk) 18:42, 23 May 2014 (UTC)

Nevertheless, there is a clear contradiction of information (perhaps due to misstatement).

"Statutory damages can be awarded by the court within the range of $750 to $30,000" "Statutory damages range from $750 per work to $150,000 per work" and then for Willful damages: "... the range is $750 to $300,000 per work"

Why are these sources being used when the source number [46] clearly points toward the actual 504 statute?

"(2) In a case where the copyright owner sustains the burden of proving, and the court finds, that infringement was committed willfully, the court in its discretion may increase the award of statutory damages to a sum of not more than $150,000."

So then Willful damages are 750 - 150k, and the next section of clause (2) of 504 states that it can be reduced as low as 200 for unknowingly infringing copyrights. I'll adjust the page accordingly. — Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 16:58, 3 August 2015 (UTC)

US treatment of foreign copyrights (or vice versa)[edit]

I'm looking for information on how copyrights from one country are treated by other countries, or more specifically, how copyrights from other countries are treated in the US.

I've looked at the article List of countries' copyright lengths: but that didn't help me answer my question.

More specifically, the question I'm trying to address is like this: suppose there is a magazine published (monthly) in the UK from 1900 to the present, with each issue copyrighted in the UK at the time of publication. (I don't know if it matters, but, iiuc, there were / are subscribers in the US who received copies mailed from the publisher.)

Which issues (by date) are in the public domain in the US?

Is there an article on Wikipedia which addresses this issue? If not, should it at least be covered somewhat in this article (even if it is to say that the issue is not covered and you probably need a lawyer (which doesn't seem like the right approach for Wikipedia))?

(Maybe a section titled "Treatment of Foreign Copyrights"?) — Preceding unsigned comment added by Rhkramer (talkcontribs) 13:52, 22 March 2015 (UTC)