Questions tagged [copyright]

For questions about the property right inherent in a creative work. Please see the tag wiki and FAQ before asking the question.

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Using an image found online

I was about to do something but got curious about the legal aspects. Say you search for an image of something, for example a famous work of architecture, because you recently visited it and want to ...
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1 vote
2 answers
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Must a work be "essential" for fair use to apply?

In comments on this answer (now moved to chat) user supercat wrote: While there seems to be a belief that use of short clips is automatically fair use, a key requirement of fair use is that the ...
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Could an advertising campaing be legally imitated if it is based on public domain images?

The case I am thinking about is absolutely hypothetical. The company XYZ asks an agency to create an advertising campaign. Outsourcing after outsourcing the work ends up on a gig site and it is done ...
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Does SolveForum abide by the CC BY-SA licence for StackExchange content?

I have noticed that SolveForum is replicating StackExchange questions, particularly their Biology Forum which seems to be replicating the Biology StackExchange questions (but not answers). While this ...
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Is it legal to download and run pirated abandonware because I'm curious about the software?

Is downloading Windows 95 and running it just because I'm curious about it legal? Purpose and character of the use: it's noncommercial, and I am doing it to learn about the software, but I'm not sure ...
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-4 votes
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Is it copyright infringement if I don’t actually make any money from someone else’s audio? [duplicate]

Say I use audio snippets from copyrighted speeches (TED talks, news segments, etc.) on top of some original music. If I use this in a public performance that is completely free and generates no profit/...
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2 votes
2 answers
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Citing whole mailing list messages on the web

When I cite a complete message from a mailing list, omitting all personal information, if any, that is relatively concise (“Hi”, definition of problem, question, “Thank You”), can I cite the message ...
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Does copyright protect your design and functionality?

I created a program that was built on a Windows Form Application. An employer completely copied the design and functionality of the program and re-created it on a website. The website is identical to ...
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31 votes
5 answers
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Lawyer says bumping software’s minor version would cost $2k to “refile” copyright paperwork. Is this typical?

I work at a small company as a software engineer. I have very little knowledge of copyright law, so forgive me for my naïveté. Recently, my company started filing paperwork and handing over several ...
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1 answer
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Do I have to cite the website I used to draw a circuit?

I need to draw some boolean circuits. If I use a web-app like https://logic.ly/demo/, do I need to cite or refer to them? Or somehow attribute that the icons are not owned by me? To put it explicitly: ...
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2 votes
1 answer
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How to become a Consultant for a patent applications?

When certain firms apply for patents, I hear that sometimes they contact experienced engineers who act as consultants. Personally, I am an electrical engineer (Ph.D.) and I was wondering If I can do ...
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1 answer
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Can a copyright holder sue someone in Switzerland for downloading their copyrighted works?

I recently learned that Switzerland decriminalized downloading most/some copyrighted works – for "private use". But that only seems to cover criminal penalties. Does that same act/law, or ...
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1 answer
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Are original text responses to surveys copyrighted?

I create surveys that anyone can respond to online, and I share the responses publicly with a Creative Commons license after reviewing and anonymizing any personal data. I'm currently in the process ...
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19 votes
2 answers
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Is Kali Linux's "Undercover" mode legal?

Kali Linux, a Linux distribution for ethical hackers and penetration testers, has an "Undercover" mode that makes its UI look like Windows 10. It copies the desktop background, Windows logo ...
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22 votes
2 answers
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Other use of profile photos: legality fair-use and permissions

I'm building an app that works across mobile devices and browsers. There is a chat component and I will be showing the profile photos that I find on the user's phone book (not from the image folders). ...
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1 vote
1 answer
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Can you transfer a Windows license from hardware to a VM running on the hardware?

I bought a computer with Windows, and I am currently dual-booting Windows and Linux. I would like to remove Windows from the computer itself and install it in a virtual machine (VM) in Linux using the ...
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4 votes
1 answer
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Is it legal to copy the KJV?

If I understand correctly, the King James Version of the Bible is copyrighted in the UK but nowhere else. I live in the US. If I upload a copy of it to my Web site (which is hosted in the US), is that ...
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Is a Voicemail I used copyright?

I left a angry voicemail to an ex about 3 years ago. They just wrote and published a defaming song about me and a portion of the song had about 5 seconds of the voicemail I left. My voice and ...
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3 votes
1 answer
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Can I use an image of SpongeBob in the thumbnail of my video about the cartoon?

Suppose I made a commentary video about SpongeBob. Would using an image of SpongeBob in the thumbnail be considered fair use in this case?
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1 vote
1 answer
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How can we answer questions about tabletop game rules without infringing copyright?

https://rpg.stackexchange.com/ is a stack dealing with table top RPG games, the most prominent being Dungeons and Dragons (D&D). Answering questions almost always relies on information from rule ...
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1 vote
1 answer
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Is it copyright infringement to send a message with a trivial photograph you don't own

Say for example you want to convey a detail to someone of a common object, and showing them a picture would be a lot simpler than describing it in words. Would it be illegal to download an image from ...
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Copyright liability for encoded files?

What are the details of copyright liability for an uploaded, encoded file? For example, let's say there's a copyright video, then someone encodes the entire file by shifting each of the bytes (either ...
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1 answer
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Is it legal to bypass Keurig coffee maker DRM?

Keurig coffee makers have DRM so only approved pods will work. Is it legal to circumvent this DRM and use "unauthorized" pods?
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1 answer
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What rights are retained by an author who grants a license?

Assume a publication agreement between Author (in the US) and Publisher (in the UK, with ample presence in the US), where the rights-granting clause says Author hereby grants to Publisher the sole ...
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2 votes
1 answer
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Is the superhero American Crusader in the public domain? If so, what aspects of the character can be safely used?

I'm planning on making a comic that has a few public domain superheroes in it, among which is the character of American Crusader. I'm quite interested in knowing how much of the character, if any, I ...
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Is a hello world program really protected by copyright?

This article discuss the question of whether a "hello world" program is protected by copyright. It comes to the conclusions that it is not (under US copyright law) because most of it is ...
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2 answers
157 views

Is this considered copyright infringement?

Location: United States Let's imagine... A created web design. B is inspired by A's design. B creates similar design. Is B's work deemed as copyright infringement? Person A Design Person B Design ...
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2 answers
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Legality of claiming fictional entities not under your ownership, to exist within your fictive reality

I was inspired to ask this question by my own Q&A on Movies&TV.SE. There's a few different versions of the question that are subtly different, but first, I'll just lay down the preliminary ...
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1 answer
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What are the rules about using a book in a video in some way?

I want to read educational books, then post tutorials about the related subjects about the book. For example, I may read a Spanish textbook and then make a YouTube playlist about the subjects in the ...
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3 answers
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Is it legal to convert a png logo of a company you're partnering with and convert it to a SVG file for them to use it on an application we made?

Is it legal to convert a png logo of a company you're partnering with and convert it to a SVG file for them to use it on an application we made? I am thinking there's a general license that forbids ...
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2 answers
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Scraping, curating, and re-publishing content

In data science, research need large corpora of text, image, or video data. Luckily, these can be acquired en masse today by scraping the web in general or specific sites, such as YouTube. For ...
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14 votes
4 answers
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Why did the First Amendment not override the Copyright Clause?

Why does the First Amendment not override the Copyright Clause, making copyright an unconstitutional violation of freedom of speech and press?
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1 vote
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is it legal to read the code of github copilot?

I have already downloaded the extension from the Visual Studio Market place in the .VSIX file. and unzipped it ,Now I'm confused. What are these .wasm files and I tried to open the extension.js but it ...
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1 vote
1 answer
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If "It's a wonderful life" is no longer in the public domain, what about contemporaneous publicity still images?

Curious about some rare cases where a movie thats copyright has lapsed is brought back into copyright, such as Jimmy Stewart's classic It's a Wonderful Life, where Republic was able to claim copyright ...
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0 votes
1 answer
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What happens if multiple people inherit a copyright?

What happens if someone lists in his/her will that his/her estate will be equally divided among his/her children, and the estate includes a copyright (specifically to a music recording)? Do all heirs ...
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1 answer
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How is the GNU Unifont and other bitmap fonts public domain?

The U.S. doesn't recognize type design as a copyrightable thing, only vectorized fonts, but what does that really mean? Is a bitmap font made in the United States public domain abroad? Are only the ...
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11 votes
7 answers
5k views

Is this copyright infringement?

Location: United States Given that copyright does not protect ideas Let's imagine app a and app b. These two apps are created by two different people. No patents are involved. The person that created ...
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23 votes
3 answers
4k views

Can someone replicate and freely use anyone's voice using AI?

Suppose person A offers paid voiceover services, and is a popular voiceover artist. Person B wants person A's voice for their revenue-generating internet video projects, because they know it will ...
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2 answers
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Advertisements and fair use

If someone publishes an article about advertisements that included screen captures from a website, is there any risk of being sued or would that qualify as fair use? If it makes a difference, assume ...
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2 votes
1 answer
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Is AI generated picture violating copyright if it's fed copyrighted material?

Suppose I create my own AI based program which is trained by input containing a set of similar images and then it spits out a cartoonified SVG representation of the thing in the input images. For ...
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Would a program for playing a game very closely based on a TV game show be legal?

Suppose I write a program for playing a game very similar to the US TV game show where contestants "answer" with questions, and publish it as FOSS. Could a TV studio company with the same ...
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14 votes
2 answers
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Could the US abolish copyright?

I know this isn't politically feasible, but is it legally possible for the United States to abolish copyright? Could the government withdraw from all treaties that require copyright, then repeal all ...
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1 vote
1 answer
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Are there any countries without copyright?

Are there any countries that do not recognize any form of copyright, and you could legally (for example) strip the DRM from a just-released movie and share it online? If so, what happens if I (a US ...
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2 votes
0 answers
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Can Satellite Imagery be used on 3D Models inside a video (with or without Contribution)?

I used Satellite Imagery from Bing Maps to create 3D models. These 3D models will be shown inside of a YouTube video (which is commercial use?). So there's a couple "layers" there: I'm using ...
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1 vote
1 answer
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Is linking to a site that is hosting an illegal livestream (copyright infringing) legal or illegal?

Let's say there is this site that hosts illegal content. Would linking to it on my own website (USA Based) be illegal or legal? The link would be up temporarily, then removed once the event has ended. ...
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12 votes
2 answers
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Am I at risk by storing or using software that violates copyright?

Imagine the following scenario: A software company copies code from some open source project and includes it in their own software without giving credit to the original authors, violating the open ...
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22 votes
4 answers
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Are works created by US government employees in the performance of their duties treated as public domain outside the US?

Copyright protection under this title is not available for any work of the United States Government, but the United States Government is not precluded from receiving and holding copyrights transferred ...
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1 vote
2 answers
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Up to what point can an OS design and theme mimic another operating system?

I am wondering to what point can the desktop theme imitate another, without being sued for copyright violation or plagiarism. Are there any commonly accepted rules in the jurisprudence of what is and ...
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13 votes
1 answer
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Commissioned a logo that contains a stock image, can I still trademark it?

I have a question similar to this one here but with circumstances that are a bit different. I purchased a logo from a seller online through Fiverr a few months ago. Since then I have incorporated this ...
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How legal it is to use a famous movie phrase as the title of my next videogame. Details inside:

I already asked this question several years ago, but it's a little different this time. Last time, the phrase was: "The world Is Yours" from Scarface movie and videogame (it's the title). ...
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