EKU Libraries offers these resources to provide copyright information related to higher education. The information presented is not a substitute for legal advice.

What is Copyright?

  • Copyright  (title 17, U.S. Code)  is  protection provided by the laws of the United States for "original works of authorship", including:

    • literary

    • dramatic

    • musical

    • architectural

    • cartographic

    • choreographic

    • pantomimic

    • pictorial

    • graphic

    • sculptural

    • audiovisual creations

  • This protection is available to both published and unpublished works.

Exclusive Rights of Copyright Holders

Copyright law grants the owner of  a copyright the exclusive right to do and to authorize others to do the following:

  • Make copies of the work 
  • Prepare works based upon the original (aka derivative works) 
  • Distribute copies of the work to the public 
  • Perform the work publicly


What Is Not Covered by Copyright?

  • Works that have not been fixed in a tangible form of expression

  • Titles, names, short phrases, and slogans; familiar symbols or designs

  • Ideas, procedures, methods, systems, processes, concepts, principles, discoveries, or devices

  • Works consisting entirely of information that is common property and containing no original authorship

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