What is copyright? Well, that depends entirely on what type of material you are talking about; books, films, songs etc., the country the work was made in and the country where you are. For a nice, thorough general definition I like to use the online Oxford Living Dictionary. They say:

  • 1[mass noun] The exclusive and assignable legal right, given to the originator for a fixed number of years, to print, publish, perform, film, or record literary, artistic, or musical material.

    ‘he issued a writ for breach of copyright’
    ‘making an unauthorized copy would infringe copyright’
    [count noun]‘works whose copyrights had lapsed’

For a simpler definition you might try the Merriam-Webster online Dictionary thus:

copyright /ˈkɑːpiˌraɪt/ noun
plural copyrights
Learner’s definition of COPYRIGHT
: the legal right to be the only one to reproduce, publish, and sell a book, musical recording, etc., for a certain period of time.
As we said earlier, copyright differs from country to country, so take a look at the links below for copyright info in several different countries.

Swiss Federal Law on Copyright


Creative Commons helps you legally share your knowledge and creativity to build a more equitable, accessible, and innovative world.






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