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Using a Copyrighted Information, Research Paper Example

Pages: 3

Words: 727

Research Paper

Abstract

This paper discusses how one can use copyrighted information. A definition of the copyright law, the cover fair use, permission for usage and how to avoid copyright law violation are likewise elucidated.

Copyrighted Information

Copyright

Copyright is defined as the right to copy. Meaning to say, it gives a person the sole and exclusive right to produce a work or a good portion of it or reproduce the same. It transcends into the delivery and performing of the protected information. It also includes the right to publish an unpublished work or a good portion of it. Copyright provides protection for works in the field of drama, literature, music and the arts. Performances, choreography, sculpture, films, photographs and recordings are likewise protected together with the computer programs and communication signals (Burrell & Coleman, 2005).

Fair Use

However, using copyrighted information does not necessarily require permission to use from the owner. This is due to the fair use rule contained in the copyright law. The reason behind the fair use rule is to give the public permission to use a percentage of the copyrighted information for purposes such as criticism and commentary without being held liable for copyright violation. This is the only limitation that affects the exclusive right of an owner. Generally speaking, there is no copyright violation when the copyrighted information is used for illustration purposes and making comments (Martin, 2002). There is also no violation when the information is used as materials for news reporting. However, it can only be done when the article is summarized or when quoted properly. In addition, use of information for research purposes is likewise permissible by the law. Fair use also extends to the use of information for educational purposes that are non-profit. Yet, using the information for commercial purposes may be permitted without violating the exclusive rights of the owner when it is for the benefit of the public or the audience such as quoting product comparisons.

Permission for Usage

Permission to use the copyrighted information is required when it is going to be used money-making purposes that will not benefit the public. When a person intends to use the material and the information repeatedly, permission is required. In addition, when the whole copyrighted information is going to be used instead of just a portion of it, the Copyright Office requires that permission from the owner be sought. In order to get a permission, the following steps are required: 1) The identification of whether or not there is a need for permission; 2) The identification of the owner of the copyrighted information; 3) The identification of the rights necessary; 4) Make contact with the owner of the information and find out if payment is required and negotiate and; 5) Make sure the permission is granted in writing for legal purposes as verbal agreements are hard to prove in court, in case something goes awry (Golvan, 2007).

How to Avoid Copyright Violation

Clearly, the best and the most ideal way of avoiding copyright infringement is to get the written permission of the owner before using the recordings, the literary works, arts, music, and other information that are protected. If only a portion of the information is quoted for academic purposes or for purposes falling on the fair use category, it will be helpful to give credit to whom it is due. Proper referencing can help avoid copyright infringement (Martin, 2002). In addition, it is imperative to note that ignorance of the law excuses no one. There is a need for education. Copyright law is straightforward but when it comes to fair use, it can get a little tricky. Hence, it is important to be very well-versed on the provision of the law and know what it permitted under the fair use and what needs permission from the owner. It is also imperative to know that almost all contents in the internet are guaranteed with copyright protection (Dowd, 2010).

References

Burrell, R. & Coleman, A. (2005). Copyright exceptions: The digital impact. UK: Cambridge University Press.

Dowd, R. (2010). Copyright litigation handbook, 2012-2013 ed. St. Paul, MN: Thomas West.

Golvan, C. (2007). Copyright: Law and practice. Sydney: The Federation Press.

Martin, J. (2002). Copyright: Current issues and laws. New York: Nova Science Publishers Inc.

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