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Applying for a US Copyright


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Applying for a US Copyright

If you have created an original work of intellectual property (such as written a novel, created a film, or painted a painting) and want to be protected from someone else using the work for any purpose without your permission, it is important to have legally “copyrighted” that work. Though the US Constitution provides that both published and unpublished works have a tacit copyright, in order to ensure that you would prevail in a legal suit to prove your ownership of the work, it is recommended that you acquire a legal copyright by registering your work with the Library of Congress. Once your work has been saved in some kind of tangible form (such as printed or saved on a computer) you are technically protected by copyright law.

Section 101 of copyright law specifies another kind of copyright, where an employer retains the legal rights to intellectual property. This is known as “work made for hire” and occurs when an employer has paid an employee to produce the original intellectual property.

Though you are not obligated to pursue a legal copyright to protect your intellectual property, with the current climate promulgated by the internet (where many believe all information should be freely shared) it is all too easy for someone to steal your intellectual property. The only sure-fire way to protect it is to acquire the legal copyright, which is usually bullet-proof in a court of law.


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