Internet Copyright Laws Essay

1383 Words 6 Pages
Internet Copyright Laws
A student comes home to his dorm at the University of Scranton after a rough day of classes. With the quick internet connection provided on the school’s network, the student makes a few clicks and logs into Morpheus, a program that enables music fans to download free music. Within a few minutes he is on his way to owning an unlimited amount of songs at no cost. Everything this student is doing is legal, right? Wrong. The downloaded music from the internet is copyrighted material.
Today’s internet is considered an “information superhighway,” a device where anything from music, books, programs and information can be shared worldwide. Since billions of people have the ability to access the internet,
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The same is true for books, logos, and anything else that can carry a copyright.
An excerpt from Ann Okerson’s article, “Who Owns Digital Works” (published in the magazine, “Scientific American”), clearly explains what types of property are protected under the United States copyright law:
“The most recent revision of the U.S. copyright law, made in 1978, is far more thorough than its predecessors. It protects creative works in general, including literature, music, drama, pantomime, choreography, pictorial, graphical and sculptural works, motion pictures and other audiovisual creations, sound recordings and architecture. (Patents and trademarks are governed by their own laws, as are trade secrets.) Copyright explicitly grants the owners of the expression of an idea the right to prevent anyone from making co copies of it, preparing derivative works, distributing the work, performing it or displaying it without permission”(Okerson paragraph 14).
The key is what type of works are protected by copyrights and the word
                                             
distribution. Many types of works that are protected by copyright can