Intellectual Property And The Copyright Act Of 1976

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Intellectual property represents ideas created by minds of humans that require certain rights for their use. Intellectual property gives companies a competitive advantage and attracts the attention of other business partners and investors (Lee, 2016). With such importance, it is necessary for the law to protect these ideas from being used by unauthorized individuals. To shield from this, trade secrets, patents, and copyrights are used to protect the ownership of intellectual property (Legal Information Institute).
A copyright gives the originator of literary, artistic, or music works the right to perform, publish, record, or print them. This can include sound recordings, paintings, photographs, films, melodies, television, radio broadcasts, cable programs, performances, and even codes to computer programs (Legal Information Institute). Since copyrights cover several different types of materials, the duration varies depending on what work is being protected. According to the Copyright Act of 1976, musical, artistic, and literary works created after January 1, 1978 have copyrights that last 70 years after the author has passed away, 95 years after publication, or 120 years from creation, whichever expires first (United States Copyright Office, 2011). However, the published editions of these works have copyrights that last 25 years after being first published. Broadcast and cable programs, on the other hand, have a copyright duration of 50 years after being created
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