Шкрум’як О.О.

студент 2-го курсу Інституту прокуратури і слідства НУ «ОЮА»

Науковий керівник: к.ф.м.н.,доцент Козін О.Б.


Copyright is a form of protection provided by the laws of the United States (title 17, U. S. Code) to the authors of “original works of authorship,” including literary, dramatic, musical, artistic, and certain other intellectual works. This protection is available to both published and unpublished works. Section 106 of the 1976 Copyright Act [1] generally gives the owner of copyright the exclusive right to do and to authorize others to do the following:

  • reproduce the work in copies or phonorecords
  • prepare derivative works based upon the work
  • distribute copies or phonorecords of the work to the public by sale or other transfer of ownership, or by rental, lease, or lending
  • perform the work publicly, in the case of literary, musical, dramatic, and choreographic works, pantomimes, and motion pictures and other audiovisual works
  • display the work publicly, in the case of literary, musical, dramatic, and choreographic works, pantomimes, and pictorial, graphic, or sculptural works, including the individual images of a motion picture or other audiovisual work
  • perform the work publicly (in the case of sound recordings*) by means of a digital audio transmission

The purpose of copyright law is to promote the Progress of Science and useful Arts, by securing for limited Times to Authors and Inventors the exclusive Right to their respective Writings and Discoveries. Current copyright law has expanded coverage to include the idea of stimulating the creation of art, literature, architecture, music, and other works of authorship. Historically, the United States recognized no absolute, natural right in an author to prevent others from copying or otherwise exploiting his/her work, but court and legislative attitudes in this regard have rapidly changed since the 1970s.

Although copyright limits freedom of speech, it generally avoids giving rights in the idea being expressed, or in facts or other elements of the public domain which an author may incorporate into their work. Others are free to express the same idea as the author did, or use the same facts, as long as they do not copy the author's original way of expressing the ideas or facts. In addition, even those rights granted in the author's expression are limited in duration and are subject to certain exceptions permitting public use under limited circumstances.

As with many legal doctrines, the effectiveness of copyright law in achieving its stated purpose is a matter of debate.

US Copyright law is governed by:

Copyright Act of 1976 – extended term to either 75 years or life of author plus 50 years (prior to this, "the interim renewal acts of 1962 through 1974 ensured that the copyright in any work in its second term as of September 19, 1962, would not expire before Dec. 31, 1976.");extended federal copyright to unpublished works; preempted state copyright laws; codified much copyright doctrine that had originated in case law

  • Berne Convention Implementation Act of 1988 – established copyrights of U.S. works in Berne Convention countries
  • Copyright Renewal Act of 1992 – removed the requirement for renewal
  • Uruguay Round Agreements Act (URAA) of 1994 – restored U.S. copyright for certain foreign works
  • Copyright Term Extension Act of 1998 – extended terms to 95/120 years or life plus 70 years

Key international agreements affecting U.S. copyright law include:

  • Berne Convention for the Protection of Literary and Artistic Works
  • Universal Copyright Convention
  • Agreement on Trade-Related Aspects of Intellectual Property Rights
  • The United States became a Berne Convention signatory in 1988. The Berne Convention entered into force in the U.S. a year later, on March 1, 1989. The U.S. is also a party to TRIPS, which itself requires compliance with Berne provisions, and is enforceable under the WTO dispute resolution process.
  • Digital Millennium Copyright Act of 1998 – criminalized some cases of copyright infringement

Problematic issues of copyright in the digital sphere

 In this digital age, copyright law becomes even more important to understand. Yet will it be around for much longer when the global nature of the Internet makes it impossible to enforce?

The popularity of the Internet, along with advances in digital imaging and desktop publishing, has raised many issues among writers, artists and photographers. Appropriation of intellectual property by pirates can now be done with ease and anonymity. A wealth of information and images abound on the Internet that can be copied with a keystroke onto a hard drive. From there the use of purloined property is limited only by the imagination. Image manipulation software makes it easy to modify an image obtained from another's website. And desktop publishing software makes it possible to take the product of another's research and use it in a newsletter, magazine article or website in a matter of seconds.

Much of this "borrowing" may be a matter of ignorance about copyright law. However, other cases are deliberate, for as the amount of information available on the Internet and in print increases, the chances of getting caught shrink. It becomes impossible for anyone to effectively police all of the publications and websites around the world.

Nonetheless, knowledge of the law can protect you and your work to some extent. It can also help keep you out of legal trouble by updating you about the rights artists and writers have over the use of their materials if and when you are tempted to use something you did not create. Important role in the protection of copyright in the United States did The Digital Millennium Copyright Act.

The Digital Millennium Copyright Act (DMCA) is a United States copyright law that implements two 1996 treaties of the World Intellectual Property Organization (WIPO). It criminalizes production and dissemination of technology, devices, or services intended to circumvent measures (commonly known as digital rights management or DRM) that control access to copyrighted works. It also criminalizes the act of circumventing an access control, whether or not there is actual infringement of copyright itself. In addition, the DMCA heightens the penalties for copyright infringement on the Internet. Passed on October 12, 1998, by a unanimous vote in the United States Senate and signed into law by President Bill Clinton on October 28, 1998, the DMCA amended Title 17 of the United States Code to extend the reach of copyright, while limiting the liability of the providers of on-line services for copyright infringement by their users.

The DMCA's principal innovation in the field of copyright is the exemption from direct and indirect liability of internet service providers and other intermediaries. This exemption was adopted by the European Union in the Electronic Commerce Directive 2000. The Copyright Directive 2001 implemented the 1996 WIPO Copyright Treaty in the EU.

Notable court case

RealNetworks, Inc. v. DVD Copy Control Association, Inc.

In August 2009, the DVD Copy Control Association won a lawsuit against RealNetworks for violating copyright law in selling its RealDVD software, allowing users to copy DVDs and store them on a hard drive. The DVD Copy Control Association claimed that Real violated the DMCA by circumventing anti-piracy measures ARccOS Protection and RipGuard, as well as breaking Real's licensing agreement with the MPAA's Content Scrambling System


Many people think that just because we are using materials and resources from the Web in educational contexts it is free from copyright. This is not the case. Materials on the Web are subject to the same kind of copyright conditions as other non-web based material, such as CDs, books, newspapers, works of art etc.

In this context we should consider this sometimes problematic area of using materials from the Internet and decide how to find copyright-friendly resources.

At some stage or other everyone will have seen the © symbol which denotes that something is protected by copyright. Many of us think that we know what this means and use materials or not based on our understanding.

Depending on which country you are in you will have varying opinions about copyright. Some people may see this as a minor problem, others may be blissfully unaware they are breaking the law and some may have had this issue brought to their attention by their authorities.

Whatever you think about copyright there are some implications for all users of the Internet to ensure they keep on the right side of the copyright law.


  1. Copyright Act of 1976 – [Електронний документ] – Режим доступу:  http://www.copyright.gov/title17/92chap1.html#106
  2. The Digital Millennium Copyright Act – [Електронний документ] – Режим доступу: http://www.gpo.gov/fdsys/pkg/PLAW-105publ304/pdf/PLAW-105publ304.pdf
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