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Copyright is a form of protection grounded in the U.S. Constitution and granted by law for original works of authorship fixed in a tangible medium of expression. Copyright covers both published and unpublished works. It protects original works of authorship including literary, dramatic, musical, and artistic works, such as poetry, novels, movies, songs, computer software, and architecture.To learn more about copyright visit the Copyright Office's FAQ.
copyright infringement occurs when a copyrighted work is reproduced, distributed, performed, publicly displayed, or made into a derivative work without the permission of the copyright owner. For more information see the Copyright Office's Definitions.
Fair use is a legal doctrine under Section 107 of the Copyright Act that promotes using copyrighted materials for purposes such as:
Fair use is determined on a case-by-case basis and is evaluated on four factors:
Visit the Copyright Office for More Information on Fair Use to learn more about the four factors.
CC licenses are copyright licenses and are legal tools that creators and other rights holders can use to offer certain usage rights to the public, while reserving other rights. For more information visit the CC non-profit's FAQ.