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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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13
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1answer
1k views

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?
5
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1answer
478 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? ...
12
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2answers
2k 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 ...
4
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1answer
539 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 ...
11
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4answers
3k 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 http://youtube-mp3.org/, one ...
48
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9answers
20k 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- ...
11
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3answers
1k 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 ...
4
votes
1answer
150 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 ...
1
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2answers
766 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 ...
15
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4answers
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. ...
3
votes
1answer
123 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 ...
5
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2answers
1k 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 ...
4
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2answers
498 views

Performing music in public

I am a musician. I want to perform music. I 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 ...
1
vote
1answer
1k 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-...
17
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4answers
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 ...
20
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3answers
1k views

Does the Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike licence allow you to specify exactly how attribution must be given?

Prompted by this Meta Stack Exchange discussion Stack Exchange uses the Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike 3.0 Unported license for user contributions. But in the footer of every page is a link ...
9
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2answers
212 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 ...
9
votes
2answers
815 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 ...
9
votes
1answer
588 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 ...
8
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1answer
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 ...
8
votes
1answer
643 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 ...
6
votes
2answers
558 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 ...
5
votes
1answer
235 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 ...
4
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2answers
2k 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 ...
1
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1answer
146 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 ...
0
votes
2answers
128 views

Re-use images uploaded by users on Google Maps for the website

Can I use images uploaded by users on Google Maps to display on my website ? If yes, do I need to reference images back to the Google Maps and how ?
0
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2answers
2k views

Derivative works vs original work

I have a question regarding copyright law. Take this for example: Company A owns the copyrights of Picture A. Some designer came across this picture and proceeded to save the picture into his ...
46
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5answers
15k 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 ...
9
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3answers
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 ...
9
votes
1answer
668 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 ...
11
votes
2answers
802 views

At what point can a computer-generated file infringe copyright?

In general it is illegal to download a copyrighted file without paying the copyright owner. But is having metadata (hash) of the copyrighted material legal? What if I've run a program (like Mathgen)...
13
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2answers
4k views

Is it legal to buy second-hand vinyls?

I live in a town that has lots of second-hand stores that sell second-hand vinyl records, tapes, etc, for incredibly low prices. I recently bought the soundtrack from A Clockwork Orange for 1 dollar ...
6
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2answers
2k 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 ...
4
votes
1answer
521 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 ...
4
votes
2answers
75k views

Is Showbox legal to use in the UK?

The Android app "Showbox" allows users to stream the latest movies (still in the cinema) to their device for watching (but not keeping). Is this app legal to use in the UK? EDIT: After researching ...
4
votes
2answers
329 views

Are there legal consequences for giving away my own musical transcriptions of copyrighted works on a website?

I've transcribed a lot of video game music in my lifetime, and am interested in making these sheet music transcriptions freely available for download on a website. I see that a lot of other websites ...
3
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2answers
7k 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 ...
2
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1answer
54 views

Software licence where no licence is found

Is it correct that I can't take the source code from an educational book and write/use in my website or use it for my own teaching purposes? Or can such code be considered "generic code" without ...
0
votes
1answer
88 views

Are sentences on websites subject to copyright?

Does using snippet sentence from sites like Wikipedia, BBC, Times, Science Daily, etc. for use in a dictionary that will be published online violate copyright?
4
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2answers
3k views

Printing copyrighted logos on t-shirts/jackets/apparel without permission: in which situations is it legal?

If I were to order custom t-shirts from a t-shirt printing company with some copyrighted brand on them, (when) would it be legally OK for me to do so without the copyright owner's permission? Is it ...
4
votes
1answer
65 views

Using copyrighted material falsely advertised as Creative Commons or public domain (in U.S.)

You're searching for images to use in a book you're working on. You find an image with a Creative Commons license on Wikipedia or some other website. So you use it, adding the proper attribution. But ...
4
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1answer
589 views

Are newspapers' quotes of other people protected by copyright?

I recently came across a New York Times article about Peter Thiel which contained several quotes by him. The quotes seem to have been from comments Thiel made directly to a New York Times reporter. I ...
4
votes
1answer
156 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?"
2
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4answers
3k views

Is Streaming Copyrighted Content Illegal in the UK

Obviously, it is illegal in most countries to download films, games, music etc without paying for them. However, there are a growing number of people who argue that streaming is not illegal as, they ...
2
votes
1answer
2k 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.
2
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1answer
195 views

Are tweets or Instagram posts copyrighted?

There are accounts on Twitter and Instagram that make money by posting sponsored content. Let's say another account does the same thing, but it just copies the tweets/posts from the more popular ...
2
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2answers
991 views

What happens to copyright owned by a defunct publisher company?

I'm especially interested in books that do not have any commercial value (i.e. the cost of publishing is much higher than any foreseeable return). I know that the answer may vary depending on country....
2
votes
2answers
101 views

Where is the line between idea/expression dichotomy?

Just wondering where idea become expression. Let's take The Lord Of The Ring as an example, if i want to write a boook about two alchemist heading to a tower in order to destroy the ring of evil, ...
2
votes
2answers
132 views

Is it legal to copy pictures found on social media and upload them again?

I know with other works, as soon as a person creates it, it is automatically copyrighted. So does that mean when a person takes a picture its automatically their property and no one else can do ...
2
votes
1answer
42 views

How can one verify a purportedly freely licensed image on a user-content site?

Based partly on comments to this question, how can a person who finds an image on a site, such as flickr, that hosts user-uploaded images verify that the it is in fact free to use. Suppose that the ...