copyright

noun
copy·​right | \ ˈkä-pē-ˌrīt How to pronounce copyright (audio) \

Definition of copyright

 (Entry 1 of 3)

: the exclusive legal right to reproduce, publish, sell, or distribute the matter and form of something (such as a literary, musical, or artistic work) His family still holds the copyright to his songs.

copyright

verb
copyrighted; copyrighting; copyrights

Definition of copyright (Entry 2 of 3)

transitive verb

: to secure a copyright on He has copyrighted all of his plays.

copyright

adjective

Definition of copyright (Entry 3 of 3)

: secured by copyright copyright songs

Other Words from copyright

Verb

copyrightable \ ˈkä-​pē-​ˌrī-​tə-​bəl How to pronounce copyright (audio) \ adjective

Examples of copyright in a Sentence

Noun His family still holds the copyright to his songs. The book is under copyright. Verb He has copyrighted all of his plays. Adjective The copyright date is 2005.
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Recent Examples on the Web: Noun Such cases are often filed preemptively when a company believes it has wrongly been threatened with a copyright lawsuit. Bill Donahue, Billboard, 19 Jan. 2022 The country’s intellectual property protection department eventually found that Mr. Acuña had violated copyright rules in both cases, and ordered him to pay fines. New York Times, 19 Jan. 2022 The fund holds copyright fees that are collected on behalf of North Korean broadcasters, and plaintiffs are seeking payments for their damages out of those funds. Washington Post, 19 Jan. 2022 Only an image’s lawful copyright holder can transfer the reproduction rights to that image. Jessica Rizzo, Wired, 19 Jan. 2022 Until now, English-language readers had to rely on the Chambers translation—which, thanks to a controversial copyright ruling, has been the only one available for almost a century. Kathryn Schulz, The New Yorker, 17 Jan. 2022 But there are limits on how much copyright owners can increase revenues from older music, Pincus said. Los Angeles Times, 15 Jan. 2022 The studio alleged that the copyright termination notice sought to prematurely cut off its rights. Winston Cho, The Hollywood Reporter, 13 Jan. 2022 Why would the copyright holder bother filing a claim for fake images? Jacob Siegal, BGR, 11 Jan. 2022 Recent Examples on the Web: Verb Her attempts to copyright her perfect nose job will not do much to ensure that anybody can recall what Cassidy Carter’s perfect nose job actually looked like when the world is underwater, or on fire, or some combination of the two. Philippa Snow, The New Republic, 27 Sep. 2021 And because no one owned the rights — a decision was made early not to copyright the design — everyone was able to own the cause. Jason Sheeler, PEOPLE.com, 3 Sep. 2021 Baker, who passed away in 2017, did not copyright the flag and its use took off around the world. Sarah Prager, Better Homes & Gardens, 16 June 2021 The issues were with YouTube, because YouTube would copyright a lot of videos. Sandra Song, Vulture, 6 Mar. 2021 In 1898, Foster Brothers began to copyright and publish reproductions of paintings, drawings, miniatures and silhouettes — again, another way to sell their frames. Helaine Fendelman And Joe Rosson, Star Tribune, 8 Dec. 2020 Material that is copyrighted or violates federal criminal law must still be taken down. The Economist, 4 June 2020 Bowden discovered that the only way to get her photos removed was to copyright them and then issue takedown notices to websites. Olivia Solon, NBC News, 18 Nov. 2019 On Monday, Leonard filed a lawsuit against sneaker giant Nike, alleging that the company fraudulently copyrighted a personal logo that Leonard himself designed. Kevin Dotson, CNN, 7 June 2019 Recent Examples on the Web: Adjective Maybe the biggest challenge, and the reason every company doesn’t default to playing crowd favorites by Beyoncé or Adele, is copyright. Frankie Adkins, Wired, 6 Dec. 2021 The fourth priority would be copyright content protection and enforcement. Dan Rys, Billboard, 28 Jan. 2021 In response to Grant’s suit, Trump argued this was copyright fair use. Eriq Gardner, Billboard, 28 Sep. 2021 Other legal issues that can muddy the waters are copyright, who is minting the NFT, the transfer of funds and anti-money-laundering laws. Michael Golomb, Forbes, 7 Sep. 2021 That’s when Sony intervened to remove the image from Twitter on a copyright claim. Chris Smith, BGR, 31 Aug. 2021 That’s the regional Samsung entity that filed a copyright claim to remove the video from YouTube. Chris Smith, BGR, 7 Aug. 2021 Still, audio of Spears testimony began circulating just hours after the hearing, including in a YouTube post that has since been taken down because of a copyright claim from the court. Ashley Cullins, Billboard, 30 June 2021 Paradise City is available to stream again after a copyright claim filed by rock band the Doors led to all eight episodes being temporarily removed shortly after its premiere, the series creator explains to EW. Rosy Cordero, EW.com, 5 Apr. 2021

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'copyright.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

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First Known Use of copyright

Noun

1735, in the meaning defined above

Verb

circa 1806, in the meaning defined above

Adjective

1870, in the meaning defined above

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Time Traveler for copyright

Time Traveler

The first known use of copyright was in 1735

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Dictionary Entries Near copyright

copyreader

copyright

copywriter

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Statistics for copyright

Last Updated

23 Jan 2022

Cite this Entry

“Copyright.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/copyright. Accessed 24 Jan. 2022.

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More Definitions for copyright

copyright

noun

English Language Learners Definition of copyright

 (Entry 1 of 3)

: the legal right to be the only one to reproduce, publish, and sell a book, musical recording, etc., for a certain period of time

copyright

verb

English Language Learners Definition of copyright (Entry 2 of 3)

: to get a copyright for a book, musical recording, etc., for a certain period of time

copyright

adjective

English Language Learners Definition of copyright (Entry 3 of 3)

: of or relating to a copyright
: not allowed to be copied without permission from the author, composer, etc.

copyright

noun
copy·​right | \ ˈkä-pē-ˌrīt How to pronounce copyright (audio) \

Kids Definition of copyright

 (Entry 1 of 2)

: the legal right to be the only one to reproduce, publish, and sell the contents and form of a literary or artistic work

copyright

verb
copyrighted; copyrighting

Kids Definition of copyright (Entry 2 of 2)

: to get a copyright on

copyright

noun
copy·​right | \ ˈkä-pē-ˌrīt How to pronounce copyright (audio) \

Legal Definition of copyright

 (Entry 1 of 2)

: a person's exclusive right to reproduce, publish, or sell his or her original work of authorship (as a literary, musical, dramatic, artistic, or architectural work) — see also common-law copyright, fair use at use sense 2, infringe, intellectual property at property, international copyright, original, public domain — compare patent, trademark

Note: Copyrights are governed by the Copyright Act of 1976 contained in title 17 of the U.S. Code. The Act protects published or unpublished works that are fixed in a tangible medium of expression from which they can be perceived. The Act does not protect matters such as an idea, process, system, or discovery. Protection under the Act extends for the life of the creator of the work plus seventy years after his or her death. For works created before January 1, 1978, but not copyrighted or in the public domain, the copyright starts on January 1, 1978, and extends for the same period as for other works, but in any case will not expire before December 31, 2002. If a work is published on or before December 31, 2002, the copyright will not expire before December 31, 2047. The Act abolishes protection under common law, as well as any rights available under state statute, in favor of the rights available under the provisions of the Act, with certain exceptions.

Other Words from copyright

copyright adjective

copyright

transitive verb

Legal Definition of copyright (Entry 2 of 2)

: to secure a copyright on

Other Words from copyright

copyrightability \ ˌkä-​pē-​ˌrī-​tə-​ˈbi-​lə-​tē \ noun
copyrightable \ ˈkä-​pē-​ˌrī-​tə-​bəl How to pronounce copyright (audio) \ adjective

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