The Law Dictionary

Featuring Black’s Law Dictionary Free Online Legal Dictionary 2nd Ed.

What is COPYRIGHT

The right of literary property as recognized and sanctioned by positive law. A right granted by statute to the author or originator of certain literary or artistic productions, whereby he is invested, for a limited period, with the sole and exclusive privilege of multiplying copies of the same and publishing and selling them. In re Rider, 16 R. I. 271, 15 Atl. 72; Mott Iron Works v. Clow, 83 Fed. 316, 27 C. C. A. 250; Palmer v. De Witt, 47 N. Y. 536, 7 Am. Rep. 480; Keene v. Wheat- ley, 14 Fed. Cas. 1S5. An incorporeal right, being the exclusive privilege of printing, reprinting, selling, and publishing his own original work, which the law allows an author. Wharton. Copyright is the exclusive right of the owner of an intellectual production to multiply and dispose of copies; the sole right to the copy, or to copy it. The word is used indifferently to signify the statutory and the common-law right; or one right is sometimes called “copyright” after publication, or statutory copyright; the other copyright before publication, or common-law copyright. The word is also used synonymously with “literary property;” thus, the exclusive right of the owner publicly to read or exhibit a work is often called “copyright” This is not strictly correct Drone, Copyr. 100. International copyright is the right of a subject of one country to protection against the republication in another country of a work which he originally published in his own country. Sweet

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