What is a Copyright and what does it protect?
Copyright protects expression. Stated in the Copyright Act of 1976, some items of expression protected include literary, musical works, pictorials, graphics, and audio recordings. As soon as an original work has been expressed in a fixed tangible form it is copyrighted. An example is a graphic image. It's protected as soon as the graphic file is saved to disk. A web site is protected as soon as the .html file was saved. In other words, a work does not have to be registered in order to be protected. Items you will encounter on the net that are eligible for copyright protection include the HTML code and text of web pages, ASCII text documents (documents in any file format), contents of email and Usenet messages, sound files, graphics files, executable computer programs and computer program listings.
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