in·​fringe·​ment | \ in-ˈfrinj-mənt How to pronounce infringement (audio) \

Definition of infringement

1 : the act of infringing : violation
2 : an encroachment or trespass on a right or privilege

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Examples of infringement in a Sentence

any government action limiting freedom of speech is an infringement of the U.S. Constitution
Recent Examples on the Web Will business owners see this as an infringement on their right to express their personal views? Soleil Ho,, "Yelp now alerts users to racism at businesses... sort of," 12 Oct. 2020 Last year, China secured support from 50 ambassadors, mostly from developing countries wary of the West and buttressed by Chinese economic ties, to extol its Xinjiang policy not as an infringement on human rights, but a boon to social stability. Washington Post, "Beijing is planning to host another Olympics. Clashes over human rights are back, too.," 8 Oct. 2020 Meghan, 39, is seeking damages from publisher Associated Newspapers Ltd. for alleged misuse of private information, copyright infringement and data protection breaches. Jill Lawless,, "Meghan’s lawyers deny she cooperated with royal book authors," 21 Sep. 2020 Meghan, 39, is seeking damages from publisher Associated Newspapers Ltd. for alleged misuse of private information, copyright infringement and data protection breaches. Jill Lawless, USA TODAY, "Duchess Meghan’s lawyers deny she cooperated with authors of 'Finding Freedom' book," 21 Sep. 2020 The court also held that the rule has the effect of establishing a lower burden of proof for infringement of popular works. Jem Aswad,, "Led Zeppelin win ‘Stairway to Heaven’ copyright battle as Supreme Court refuses to hear case," 5 Oct. 2020 The dispute between the two parties isn’t new, and Ocado has previously denied AutoStore’s accusations of patent infringement. Deirdre Hipwell,, "Ocado Faces Patent Infringement Lawsuits in U.S., U.K.," 1 Oct. 2020 Portland City Commissioner Jo Ann Hardesty pointed to this potential misuse of the technology—and subsequent infringement of civil liberties—in a statement posted on Twitter, just before city council passed the law. Courtney Linder, Popular Mechanics, "Why Portland Just Passed the Strictest Facial Recognition Ban in the U.S.," 12 Sep. 2020 Furthermore, North Korea is committed to its nuclear goals in blatant infringement of denuclearization pledges made in years past, showing little transparency other than declaring tests after the fact. Hollie Mckay, Fox News, "World’s nuclear capabilities are decreasing in overall numbers but growing deadlier," 2 Sep. 2020

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'infringement.' 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 infringement

1628, in the meaning defined at sense 1

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Time Traveler for infringement

Time Traveler

The first known use of infringement was in 1628

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Statistics for infringement

Last Updated

20 Oct 2020

Cite this Entry

“Infringement.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 26 Oct. 2020.

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More Definitions for infringement



Legal Definition of infringement

: the act or an instance of infringing especially : the unauthorized use of copyrighted or patented material or of a trademark, trade name, or trade dress — see also equivalent, fair use

Note: Infringement of a trademark, trade name, or trade dress involves use of one by the infringer that is the same as that of the owner or so similar that it is likely to deceive or to cause confusion or mistake on the part of the average purchaser. Infringement of a copyright involves the copying of a material and substantial portion of the protected work. If the alleged infringer denies copying, the copyright holder may be able to prove infringement with circumstantial evidence of the infringer's access to the protected work and of similarities between the two works.

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