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Questions tagged [copyright]

For questions about the property right statutorily granted to creative works. Please see the tag wiki and FAQ before asking the question.

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13 votes
1 answer
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In the US, when is fair use a defense to copyright infringement?

What is fair use in the US? When would it be a successful defense to copyright infringement?
user avatar
7 votes
1 answer
5k views

Is this copyright infringement? Is it fair use? What if I don't make any money off it?

If someone were hypothetically working on a project that required them to incorporate copies of a copyrighted work (music, movies, books, etc.), how would they know if it would be considered fair use? ...
16 votes
2 answers
3k views

Can you be accused of hotlinking/copyright violation if you use an iframe?

Can you be accused of hotlinking or copyright infringement if you use an iframe (web element) of another website? Can you be sued for this if the website doesn't prevent iframe using and doesn't ...
j. doe's user avatar
  • 163
17 votes
3 answers
7k views

Why are there so many YouTube to MP4 and MP3 download websites online when it is illegal?

If it is illegal to download videos and audios from YouTube due to copyright reasons, why are there so many YouTube to MP4 and MP3 download websites online? For example, https://freevideotomp3.com/, ...
PedroD's user avatar
  • 321
38 votes
6 answers
8k views

Why does browser cache not count as copyright infringement?

My browser is saving a copy of the web pages I visit on my computer. How is that not copyright infringement? in this answer I read: I would hazard a guess that displaying an HTML webpage online is ...
Mario Trucco's user avatar
10 votes
3 answers
2k views

Is it infringement to give a link to a copyrighted file?

Does posting a link to a copyrighted file, such that accessing the linked file would constitute infringement, but where the file itself is not on my servers, constitute any sort of crime or ...
anonymous's user avatar
  • 101
17 votes
4 answers
2k views

Which jurisdiction applies to copyright violations on the internet?

A person residing in country A takes a work by an artist in country B and puts it onto a website they own but which is hosted in country C which is intended for an audience of people in country D. ...
Philipp's user avatar
  • 7,364
13 votes
2 answers
2k views

How can I legally protect my website from users who upload copyrighted material?

I have a small website that hosts content in the form of text from registered users. The content can be described more specifically as short novels, essays and other personal work. How do I protect ...
Dakter's user avatar
  • 486
9 votes
2 answers
1k views

Performing music in public

I am a musician. I want to perform music. How do I do this without being sued into oblivion? I am particularly interested in UK law. As I understand it, a specific sound recording (of anything) is ...
MathematicalOrchid's user avatar
4 votes
2 answers
2k views

What is considered a derivative work?

US Copyright law defines "derivative work": A “derivative work” is a work based upon one or more preexisting works, such as a translation, musical arrangement, dramatization, ...
Thunderweb's user avatar
11 votes
3 answers
2k views

Is a randomly-generated book a violation of copyright?

Let's say I create a computer program that randomly chooses words and records them. Now, this generator spits out an exact word-for-word copy of a non-public-domain book. If I publish this (without ...
Kaz Wolfe's user avatar
  • 299
10 votes
1 answer
883 views

Can Google legally host images for its search results without permission?

Google crawls websites, and downloads the images to their servers along with the related metadata. These images are then presented to the user when searching Google for related images. If the owner ...
IeuanG's user avatar
  • 203
4 votes
1 answer
892 views

Is it legal to post a photograph that I captured of a stranger in the street?

I captured a photograph in the street. The photograph includes people who I don't know. There is nothing in the photograph that I believe can offend anybody (e.g. no nude or illegal act). I just ...
Ben-Uri's user avatar
  • 175
4 votes
1 answer
390 views

Are there any laws on copyrighted material, preventing them from being translated?

I am an aspiring translator and hoping to go to university within the next two years. Part of going to university tends to include work experience in the section you wish to work in. Due to my ...
bonney12's user avatar
4 votes
1 answer
253 views

What is the practical difference between "fair use" and "fair dealing" in Copyright law?

In the united-states, fair-use is a defence to copyright infringement. In other jurisdictions, particularly members or ex-members of the British Commonwealth such as united-kingdom and australia ...
Dale M's user avatar
  • 211k
1 vote
2 answers
415 views

Does Fair Use of copyright apply to educational youtube channels?

I'm not an official school and I'm not registered or related to any university or any governmental education system. It's only an educational channel on Youtube that aims to teach Arabic. According to ...
user2824371's user avatar
1 vote
2 answers
3k views

How different does something have to be so it doesn't infringe on a copyright?

I'm an engineer and I wanted to make a toy for my 3 year old daughter for Christmas. She loves Little Einsteins but since that was 12 years ago, they don't really make many of the toys anymore. Any ...
Rincewind's user avatar
  • 121
48 votes
8 answers
33k views

How is it possible for millions to use pirated software at home and never get arrested?

It's not like talking about using weeds that you tell your friends about but you don't go in public shouting about it. Instead people go to online forums sometimes posting with their real names- ...
Ulkoma's user avatar
  • 1,319
8 votes
2 answers
2k views

How can "factual" intellectual property be protected?

As noted in this answer: Facts and information cannot be copyrighted. Just because a work is copyrighted, doesn't mean every part of that work is copyrighted, and factual information conveyed ...
feetwet's user avatar
  • 21.8k
6 votes
1 answer
1k views

How legal is offering abandonware for download?

A quick background to my project (it's essential to the question, as you'll see later): My project offers a multiplayer server platform for server listings for a game (Crysis Wars), allowing players ...
AStopher's user avatar
  • 162
5 votes
1 answer
470 views

Is OCRed text automatically copyright?

If someone puts out an OCR of a scan of a Public Domain work, is that OCR under copyright? On one hand, one may consider that "creative work", on the other hand, the "creative work" (the resultant ...
ocr's user avatar
  • 51
24 votes
2 answers
3k views

Does volunteer photographer own copyright?

An amateur photographer at a scenic rest stop sees a couple trying to compose a decent photo of themselves with the beautiful river in the background. This happens so often that as he approaches ...
feetwet's user avatar
  • 21.8k
24 votes
3 answers
32k views

Is downloading YouTube videos legal?

I've always been under the assumption that doing such was illegal. I don't see any difference between downloading music from YouTube and downloading music from The Pirate Bay. Apparently, there is ...
BCLC's user avatar
  • 919
11 votes
2 answers
1k views

How to properly maintain website footer copyright notice?

There are often 3 copyright notice formats one might come across in the footer of website: Copyright © [Year the site or page was published]-[Year always kept current] Copyright © [Year this page on ...
Madness's user avatar
  • 284
6 votes
2 answers
4k views

Ownership of Work Copyright by Multiple Authors

If a work is "Copyright © year Author One and Author Two" (with no written or verbal agreement between Author One and Author Two regarding regarding ownership), what rights does each individual author ...
Herb's user avatar
  • 63
6 votes
1 answer
430 views

Can the US Government assert copyright on a government work internationally?

From what I understand, large swaths of US Government works are considered "public domain", but this unrestricted status applies only within the United States, For this question I am assuming the ...
crasic's user avatar
  • 463
5 votes
5 answers
721 views

Who if anyone owns copyright of algorithmically produced works?

The image below is generated in real time by a Generative Adversarial Network trained on existing works of art (try reloading the page). The process is described in their paper which also ...
User65535's user avatar
  • 6,824
5 votes
1 answer
527 views

Does reproducing a board game as a video game violate copyright?

The context I am thinking of is converting a board game into a video game or app. Of course, I can't manufacture a physical copy of the game without permission, but does the same apply to a virtual ...
Benubird's user avatar
  • 409
2 votes
1 answer
4k views

Length of movie clip for fair-use?

Is there some maximum length of a movie clip that can be publicly shared as "fair use?" E.g., the Youtube channel Movieclips shows clips with an average length of 2:30.
Mark's user avatar
  • 23
1 vote
3 answers
12k views

Legality of creating your own backup copies of video games you own

As far as backup copies of games you legally own are concerned, is there clear stance on what would be considered illegal? Nintendo's legal page pertaining to this matter states the following: Can ...
plu's user avatar
  • 125
1 vote
1 answer
2k views

Is it legal to scrape a website and create my own database?

I'm working on a website that needs a database which is available publically on another site (let's just says it is IMDB). It'd be great if I could create my database by scraping IMDB. It'll be a one-...
user avatar
1 vote
2 answers
318 views

Is licensing required to use an excerpt of a song within a recording?

I'm currently recording a cover version of a song for inclusion on a compilation album which will be sold on Bandcamp. Because Bandcamp does not pay mechanical royalties, the organiser of the ...
Astralbee's user avatar
  • 135
48 votes
4 answers
17k views

Is it illegal to infringe copyright if your boss or your client ordered you to do it?

The first possible scenario is this: suppose you work in a company, and you need to install some software for a client. The software needs to be purchased, but the boss tells you to just download it ...
reed's user avatar
  • 1,838
17 votes
4 answers
9k views

Can numbers be illegal?

This video explaining this wikipedia article says that possessing a particular number can be illegal. Is this true? From the article (internal links and formatting removed): An illegal prime is a ...
GRiMe2D's user avatar
  • 307
13 votes
2 answers
2k views

Is it legal to write software to convert data from a proprietary format?

I have created a piece of software that converts a proprietary format from the database blob of a large, well known commercial software company into the equivalent open source data type. The large ...
WorriedDeveloper's user avatar
12 votes
6 answers
5k views

Can a photo that contains a trademark be used by a political campaign?

There's a current kerfuffle regarding a campaign photo used by the Biden campaign. The photo shows the logo for the Washington Redskins in the original photo but removed in the photo displayed on CNN....
Dave D's user avatar
  • 5,595
11 votes
1 answer
1k views

Does copyrighted code protect intellectual property rights on novel algorithms it implements?

Imagine you have come up with a novel algorithm to solve a problem, and have implemented it in, e.g., javascript, and have put its src, along with an appropriate copyright, on a publicly available ...
user avatar
10 votes
2 answers
481 views

At what point and how should I change the license/Copyright notice when I create a derivative?

If I take a piece of software that is licensed as MIT (quoted at the end), and use it as a scaffold to create for my own thing, do I need to keep including the old license perpetually? This would seem ...
Shwouchk's user avatar
  • 201
9 votes
2 answers
1k views

Can I get my answers deleted from Stack Exchange?

According to a moderator statement in meta that I read, Stack Exchange claims a "license" on the answers and questions which a user has posted. From a copyright standpoint can a claim be made or a ...
Cicero's user avatar
  • 6,920
8 votes
2 answers
5k views

Can you copyright data?

I was reading this link and it says at the bottom that: The panel data are copyrighted by the Initiative on Global Markets and are being analyzed for an article to appear in a leading peer-reviewed ...
Alex Petralia's user avatar
7 votes
1 answer
308 views

Is something including an unmodified work considered a derivative work?

Let's say I want to publish a book which contains an extract of a Wikipedia article. I don't want to modify the extract in any way, I just want to copy it into my book. Wikipedia text seems to be ...
Putokas's user avatar
  • 123
7 votes
3 answers
2k views

Bypassing website's paywall by modifying HTTP request headers

Recently I see some debates about bypassing paywalls by modifying browser's HTTP request as stated on ghack. Most paywalled websites allow users to read a certain number of free articles before ...
Johnson's user avatar
  • 171
6 votes
4 answers
3k views

Copyright infringement question, photography of public art

Near Las Vegas is an outdoor earth art piece called Seven Magic Mountains. I have taken many photos there, the one above I took, well its a frame from a movie from my drone. I am out a few weeks ago ...
Jon's user avatar
  • 375
6 votes
1 answer
219 views

Is it legal to republish lyrics?

Can a lyrics web site be legal, assuming there are no special agreements with the artists? Is publishing song lyrics considered "fair use?"
Farsk Eown's user avatar
5 votes
1 answer
415 views

Is a work copyrighted on fixation or publication? What's the difference? How is it proved?

This is in part a followup to this comment in which a user wrote: “fixation” broadly depends on publication. How else d’you think fixation is established? In a later comment the same user wrote: In ...
David Siegel's user avatar
5 votes
1 answer
557 views

Can I legally update, republish and sell an old electronic game?

I played a game back in 1999 from Westwood Studios that really impacted me, and I want to remake it with modern graphics. Westwood Studios has since been acquired by Electronic Arts and I would like ...
goncalotomas's user avatar
5 votes
3 answers
13k views

Transcribing music and the legality of using musical transcription

I'm learning to play an instrument and I would like to transcribe the songs I heard for later practicing. I have some questions regarding transcribing music and the legality of using musical ...
Teiv's user avatar
  • 161
4 votes
2 answers
333 views

Is loading assets from another game's install folder copyright infringement?

Suppose I make a video game which uses assets from another game. The assets are however not included, but rather obtained by loading them from the other game's install folder (the player needs to have ...
user34913's user avatar
3 votes
4 answers
4k views

What law makes watching pirated movies illegal?

I understand that distribution of copyrighted content is illegal, but have always thought that receiving that content was legal. However, I recently read a news article stating that people streaming ...
user15597's user avatar
1 vote
1 answer
218 views

Do I need permission to reimplement application programming interface calls/classes?

Suppose MS Excel has an API so that other programs can communicate with it. Suppose I'm the developer of OpenOffice Calc, and I want other programs to be able to communicate with my program in like ...
moonman239's user avatar
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