Traditionally, for artists, dealing with copyright can be an overwhelming task. With plenty of misinformation strewn about, the ease of access and sharing of content over the internet, and complex legal documents to write up, creators simply don’t have time. However it is important to understand copyright, because it is a lawfully given write. That’s why we’ve written up 4 quick, but important things to know about copyright.
What is Copyright
Copyright is a legal right that gives musicians, writers, and artists the ability to reproduce and distribute copies of their work. If you created it, it’s likely that you own the copyright to it. In certain cases, a business may own the copyright to your work. For instance, if you work for a film studio, unless you’ve outlined an agreement in your contract, they probably own the copyright to the work you produce.
Copyright does not require registration
It’s true. In both Canada and the United States all original works are protected by the Copyright Act of Canada, and The Copyright Act of 1976 & the DMCA respectively. While a copyright does not need to be registered in order to be claimed, it is strongly recommended that you register everything you produce if you want to completely protect your work.
What comes with registering a copyright?
In Canada, upon registering a copyright for a piece of work, the creator receives a certificate from the Canadian Intellectual Property Office. By Canadian laws, a copyright exists for the duration of the creator’s life plus, 50 years. Works registered in the United States qualify for the same protection for the creator’s lifetime with an additional 70 years of protection after their death. Upon registration, you are provided with a certificate that stands as proof that a copyright exists for that particular piece. More importantly, if your work is infringed, you have the right to sue for statutory damages and legal fees which can amount to a much larger reward!
Dealing with copyright is no longer a difficult process.
We want artists to no longer be afraid of posting their work online for fear of theft. We’re providing the tools to make it super easy for creators to check up on their work around the net. It only requires about 20 minutes every two weeks. No more reverse photo searches through Google, and no more writing up lengthy takedown requests, we’ve got you covered!
By Nicholas Mackenzie