A Guide to Using Copyright to Protect Your Work

  • Price: £3.60
  • Published: August 2014
  • Type: Business Information Factsheet
  • Format: PDF

Copyright is a legal right that is granted automatically to the creators of certain types of original work. These types of work include literary works such as novels, training manuals and song lyrics, computer programs, musical works such as an original score, dramatic works such as a ballet or play and a recording or broadcast of an original work, including films on DVD. Copyright protects the expression of an idea but does not protect the idea itself. For example, it protects the words in a book but not the plot. It may be possible to protect the underlying ideas in other ways including patents and design registration.

The owner of copyright in a work can control how their material is used. As copyright arises automatically as soon as an original work is created, the creator does not need to fill in any forms or pay any fees for copyright protection.

This factsheet explains the principle of copyright and how you can use it to protect your original material. It provides guidelines on what to do if you think your copyright is being infringed and information on licensing your copyright.

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