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Copyright

Copyright is a type of property right on a person’s creative skill and labor. Copyright protects the form or way an idea or information is expressed, not the idea or information itself. Copyright is not a tangible thing. It is made up of a bundle of exclusive economic rights to do certain acts with an original work or other copyright subject matter.

These rights include the right to copy, publish, communicate (for example, broadcast, make available online) and publicly perform the copyright material.

Copyright creators also have a number of non- economic rights. These are known as moral rights. These are the right of integrity of authorship, the right of attribution of authorship and the right against false attribution of authorship.

Copyright is Distinct From Physical Property

There is a clear distinction between the copyright in a work and the ownership of the physical article in which the work exists. For example, a writer may own the copyright in the text of a book even though the person who purchases it will own the physical copy of the book.

Similarly, the buyer of an original painting does not have the right to make copies of it without the permission of the owner of the copyright; the right of reproduction remains with the copyright owner who is generally the artist.

Copyright comes into picture the moment a work is created. However, from an enforcement perspective, registration is often preferred.

A certificate of registration of copyright contains the date of creation of the document and the creator of the document. These particulars need to be filed with a statutory authority, i.e. the Registrar of Copyrights at the time of registration.