User:Quadell/copyright

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This page was created by User:Quadell to help you determine if a work is protected by copyright in the United States, or is in the public domain. Since Wikipedia's main servers are located in the U.S., this can be used to determine whether the work can be tagged {{PD}} or not. All information is correct to the best I can determine; however, nothing on this page should be construed as legal advice, and I cannot be liable for any damages if this information is inadvertantly incorrect.

Uncopyrightable works[edit]

1. If a work contains no new creative content whatsoever, it is not copyrightable. (See {{PD-ineligible}}.)

2. If a work was prepared by an officer or employee of the United States Federal Government, or of the State Government of California, as part of that person's official duties, then it is not copyrightable and is thus in the public domain. Other countries governments may have similar policies. (See {{PD-USGov}}, {{PD-CAGov}}, {{PD-PolishGov}}, etc.)

3. If the author of a work has declared the work to be placed in the public domain, then the work can be used as if it were in the public domain. (See {{PD-author}}.)

Unpublished works[edit]

4. If the work has NEVER been published before in any form, it is considered an "unpublished work". Alternatively, if a work was FIRST published in 2003 or later, even though it was created before 1935, it is still legally considered an "unpublished work".

5. If an "unpublished work" is by a known author with a known year of death, then the work is in the public domain if the author died before 1935.

6. If an "unpublished work" is by an anonymous or corporate author, or if the year of death for the author is not known, then the work is in the public domain if the work was created before 1885.

Published works[edit]

7. If a work was first published before 1923, it's in the public domain no matter what. (See {{PD-US}}.)

Published works in the United States[edit]

Note: If a work was first published anywhere in the world, but was published in the U.S. within 30 days, it is still considered to be "first published in the U.S."

8. If a work was first published in the U.S. between 1923 and 1977, and it was published without a copyright notice, it's in the public domain.

9. If a work was first published in the U.S. between 1923 and 1963 WITH a copyright notice, then it's in the public domain ONLY IF the copyright was not renewed during the calendar year of the year of publication plus 28 years. (So a document first published in 1952 would have to have been renewed some time during the calendar year 1980.) To determine if a renewal was filed in 1978 or later (for material first published between 1950 and 1963), you can search the comprehensive U.S. Copyright Office Online Search. To determine if a renewal was filed before 1978 (for material first published before 1950), you can search the Stanford's Copyright Renewal Database (or Rutgers' version), which list only books, or the longer and less user-friendly Project Gutenberg listing for all materials.

Update: A new and useful resource is the searchable Catalog of Copyright Entries hosted at the University of Pennsylvania.

10. If a work was first published in the U.S. between 1978 and March 1, 1989, and it was published without a copyright notice, then it's in the public domain only if the author failed to subsequently register that copyright. This can be determined by searching the U.S. Copyright Office Online Search.

Published works outside the United States[edit]

11. If a work was first published outside the U.S. between 1923 and 1977, and the work was not protected by copyright in its home country as of January 1, 1996, then it is in the public domain. This must be determined on a country-by-country basis.

See also[edit]

Sources[edit]

Copyright of this page[edit]

By uploading this page to Wikipedia, I agree to license it under the GFDL. In addition, I agree to release all text I created on this page into the public domain. – Quadell (talk) (sleuth) 19:24, Apr 26, 2005 (UTC)