Bench & Bar

MAR 2018

The Bench & Bar magazine is published to provide members of the KBA with information that will increase their knowledge of the law, improve the practice of law, and assist in improving the quality of legal services for the citizenry.

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| MARCH/APRIL 2018 14 b) In no case does copyright protection for an original work of authorship extend to any idea, procedure, process, system, method of operation, concept, principle, or discovery, regard- less of the form in which it is described, explained, illustrated, or embodied in such work. As Section 102 indicates, mere ideas, concepts, methods, and facts cannot beprotected by copyright; only original expressions of such things are protected. For example, absent some element of ori- ginality in the selection, arrangement, or coordination of the facts, mere collections of facts are not protected by copyright. Likewise, while the law will protect a particular expression of an idea or concept, it will not protect the idea or concept itself. is is known as copyright law's "idea/expression" or "fact/expression" dichotomy. Section 103 goes on to provide protection for original compilations (collections of preexisting works or otherwise unprotected data) and derivative works (such as movies based on books). Protection, however, extends only to the new contributions of the author, such as the selection and arrangement of materials in compilations or the additional elements of a derivative work. WHEN AND FOR HOW LONG DOES A COPYRIGHT EXIST? Under the current Copyright Act, protection exists from the moment an original work of authorship is fixed in a tangible medium of expression (for example, written on paper or saved to Copyright Law: By: Will Montague C opyright is a form of intellectual property protection pro- vided to creators of "original works of authorship," such as books, artwork, music, and even computer programs. e law is based on Article I, § 8, clause 8 of the U.S. Constitution, which grants Congress the power "[t]o 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." e Copyright Act of 1976—its most recent itera- tion—is set out in Chapter 17 of the U.S. Code. Before the 1976 Act was the Copyright Act of 1909, itself preceded by two earlier versions beginning with the Copyright Act of 1790. Prior to passage of the current Act, state common law of copyright protected unpublished works of authorship, while federal copyright law protected published works. Since Jan. 1, 1978, the effective date of the 1976 Act, federal law has preempted state copyright protec- tion and established a uniform federal system for the protection of works of authorship. State law, however, may still control in some instances involving narrow categories of works, such as pre-1972 sound recordings. WHAT DOES COPYRIGHT LAW PROTECT? Section 102 sets forth the Copyright Act's primary scope: a) Copyright protection subsists, in accordance with this title, in original works of authorship fixed in any tangible medium of expression, now known or later developed, from which they can be perceived, reproduced, or otherwise communicated, either directly or with the aid of a machine or device. Works of authorship include the following categories: 1) literary works; 2) musical works, including any accompanying words; 3) dramatic works, including any accompanying music; 4) pantomimes and choreo- graphic works; 5) pictorial, graphic, and sculptural works; 6) motion pictures and other audiovisual works; 7) sound recordings; and 8) architectural works. Features: ART LAW, COPYRIGHT & TRADEMARK

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