Thursday, November 22, 2007

Rights - A Look

I did some research on copyrights. What prompted this was a desire to form my ideas in a book at some point in time. I have been working on an autobiography for some time now and have been toying with the idea of put this and other blogs and my website content into this medium.

This is what the government says:

Copyright protects “original works of authorship” that are fixed in a tangible form of expression. The fixation need not be directly perceptible so long as it may be communicated with the aid of a machine or device. Copyrightable works include the following categories:
1) literary works;
2) musical works, including any accompanying words
3) dramatic works, including any accompanying music
4) pantomimes and choreographic works
5) pictorial, graphic, and sculptural works
6) motion pictures and other audiovisual works
7) sound recordings
8) architectural works

These categories should be viewed broadly. For example, computer programs and most “compilations” may be registered as “literary works”; maps and architectural plans may be registered as “pictorial, graphic, and sculptural works.”

And this is the cool part:

The use of a copyright notice is no longer required under U.S. law, although it is often beneficial. Because prior law did contain such a requirement, however, the use of notice is still relevant to the copyright status of older works.

This is the part that lets me live forever:

A work that was created (fixed in tangible form for the first time) on or after January 1, 1978, is automatically protected from the moment of its creation and is ordinarily given a term enduring for the author’s life plus an additional 70 years after the author’s death. In the case of “a joint work prepared by two or more authors who did not work for hire,” the term lasts for 70 years after the last surviving author’s death. For works made for hire, and for anonymous and pseudonymous works (unless the author’s identity is revealed in Copyright Office records), the duration of copyright will be 95 years from publication or 120 years from creation, whichever is shorter.

So I am not going to worry too much today, or tomorrow either.