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

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Other Words from copyright

Verb

copyrightable \ ˈkä-​pē-​ˌrī-​tə-​bəl How to pronounce copyrightable (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 And policing copyright infringements is a cinch compared with other forms of content. The Economist, "Countries are increasingly willing to censor speech online," 7 Nov. 2019 Costumes have to be instantly recognizable without infringing on copyright and be buyable before everyone forgets that that meme ever existed. Wired, "Meme Costumes Are Dead. Long Live the Meme Costume," 31 Oct. 2019 Are viral sports GIFs copyright infringement and subject to takedown? Eric Limer, Popular Mechanics, "The GIF Is Dead. Long Live the GIF.," 30 Oct. 2019 But proving copyright infringement could be tough on a platform where users are often inclined to make the same jokes. Bethonie Butler, chicagotribune.com, "Who wrote Lizzo’s ‘Truth Hurts’? Breaking down the complicated songwriter drama," 22 Oct. 2019 But proving copyright infringement could be tough on a platform where users are often inclined to make the same jokes. Washington Post, "Who wrote Lizzo’s ‘Truth Hurts’? Breaking down the complicated songwriter drama.," 21 Oct. 2019 But your company has availed itself of protections under law that shield it from liability for defamation, copyright infringement, etc. Dennis Prager, National Review, "An Open Letter to Google Co-Founder Sergey Brin," 15 Oct. 2019 Earlier this week, Trump tweeted a meme of a Nickleback video that Twitter removed for copyright infringement, which prompted a series of jokes from Oliver on Sunday night. BostonGlobe.com, "Comedian John Oliver revisited the ongoing impeachment inquiry into President Trump during the opening sequence of his show “Last Week Tonight” on HBO on Sunday Night. The host focused on the president’s public call for an investigation into Joe Biden’s family and on the emergence of," 7 Oct. 2019 Nike is alleging copyright infringement and breach of contract against Leonard, who led the Toronto Raptors to the NBA championship and then signed with the LA Clippers. oregonlive, "Judge in CA passes NBA star Kawhi Leonard’s suit against Nike to federal court in Oregon," 4 Oct. 2019 Recent Examples on the Web: Verb The site protects itself from legal threats by removing copyrighted content, but allows practically everything else onto the site without limits. Anchorage Daily News, "3 mass shootings this year began with a hateful screed on 8chan, whose founder calls it a terrorist refuge in plain sight," 4 Aug. 2019 Also featured will be renowned origami expert and mathematics professor Toshikazu Kawasaki, whose copyrighted one minute rose origami design is featured below. oregonlive.com, "World class origami experts descend on Portland for Pacific Coast OrigamiUSA 2019 Conference," 12 Aug. 2019 Joseph Buckley, president of John E. Reid & Associates Inc. in Chicago, the company that copyrighted the Reid technique in the early 1960s, adds that Kassin's studies lack validity because they were not conducted using professional interrogators. Douglas Starr, Science | AAAS, "This psychologist explains why people confess to crimes they didn’t commit," 13 June 2019 Government studies are not copyrighted and can be published by anyone. Hillel Italie, The Seattle Times, "Publishers plan bound editions of Mueller report," 30 Mar. 2019 And for those who love the idea of building their own, just know these designs are copyrighted, although Pauly is looking for apprentices to pass on the legacy. Ann Lien, House Beautiful, "You Could Own Your Own Fairy Tale Cottage," 17 Apr. 2019 The biggest question is whether a dance move can be copyrighted at all — a legal matter that has never been fully answered. Nick Statt, The Verge, "Fortnite keeps stealing dances — and no one knows if it’s illegal," 20 Dec. 2018 Those were actual incidents—historical facts can’t be copyrighted. Michael Mccann, SI.com, "Why the Law Appears to Favor Alabama in Budding Barbershop Battle With LeBron," 5 Apr. 2018 Specifically, nine set-top box distributors were referred to the FCC in October for enabling the unlawful streaming of copyrighted material, seven of which displayed the FCC logo, although there was no record of such compliance. Jon Brodkin, Ars Technica, "FCC Republican asks Amazon and eBay to boost crackdown on pirate TV boxes," 29 May 2018 Recent Examples on the Web: Adjective The publishers claim the feature violates copyright law. Jeremy Kahn, Fortune, "An Offer You Can’t Refuse: How A.I. Is Poised to Transform Negotiations. Eye on A.I.," 3 Sep. 2019 Together, the three cases -- all of which involved compositions rather than recordings -- could reshape both legal precedents and industry practices concerning what constitutes copyright infringement. Steve Knopper, Billboard, "Copyright Chaos? 'Dark Horse' Verdict Could Lead to New Wave of Lawsuits," 8 Aug. 2019 Use of those mods constitutes copyright infringement and breach of the game's EULA, Epic argues, echoing lawsuits filed against Fortnite cheaters filed last year. Kyle Orland, Ars Technica, "Fortnite, GTA V hackers face legal action for online cheating," 17 Oct. 2018 That court upheld a lower court's previous ruling, which said, basically, that animals can't file copyright infringement suits. Susannah Cullinane, CNN, "Monkey does not own selfie copyright, appeals court rules," 24 Apr. 2018 If restricting resale of Frozen download codes is copyright misuse, that doesn't just mean that Redbox can re-sell download codes. Timothy B. Lee, Ars Technica, "How a fight over Star Wars download codes could reshape copyright law," 23 Feb. 2018 Energy Intelligence Group alleges that forwarding copies of its publications violates copyright laws. L.m. Sixel, Houston Chronicle, "Houston jury awards energy publisher $585,000 for copyright violations," 8 Dec. 2017 Previously, Google had only removed webpages with identifying financial information, such as credit card numbers, and with content that violates copyright laws. Bloomberg News, NOLA.com, "Google to remove private medical records from search results," 24 June 2017 With Ivan Pereira and Alison Fox ——— ©2017 Newsday _____ Copyright 2017 Tribune Content Agency. Rachelle Blidner And Laura Figueroa, Jewish Journal, "NATIONAL: Celebrate Israel parade steps off in Manhattan on Sunday," 5 June 2017

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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Statistics for copyright

Last Updated

23 Nov 2019

Cite this Entry

“Copyright.” The Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster Inc., https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/copyright. Accessed 5 December 2019.

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More Definitions for copyright

copyright

noun
How to pronounce copyright (audio)

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 copyrightable (audio) \ adjective

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