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

In May, the band filed a trademark infringement suit in California accusing the Longmont brewery of seeking to profit from the band’s fame. Kristina Pritchett, The Denver Post, "Longmont’s Oskar Blues, Guns N’ Roses settle trademark-infringement lawsuit," 19 Aug. 2019 William Hill filed a copyright infringement suit in October in federal court. Washington Post, "Bookmaker gives $50K from copyright suit to writing class," 24 June 2019 And in 2018, Adidas settled a trademark infringement suit over a Skechers shoe that resembled Adidas Stan Smith sneakers. Sangeeta Singh-kurtz, Quartzy, "Adidas has sued pretty much everyone who has used stripes," 21 June 2019 Right-wing conspiracy theorist website InfoWars has agreed to settle a copyright infringement suit for $15,000 and a promise to never use the melancholy frog again, after Pepe's creator — cartoonist Matt Furie — took them to court. Joshua Bote, USA TODAY, "InfoWars to part with Pepe the Frog — now an alt-right 'hate symbol' — in $15,000 suit," 11 June 2019 The copyright infringement suit, filed in federal court in Southern California, drops in the middle of the NBA finals as Leonard seeks to lead the Toronto Raptors to its first championship., "Kawhi Leonard asks court to reject Nike’s copyright of his ‘Klaw’ logo," 3 June 2019 The publishers argue that this is straight-up copyright infringement. Timothy B. Lee, Ars Technica, "Book publishers sue Audible to stop new speech-to-text feature," 24 Aug. 2019 Opponents of the bills often described them as an infringement on states' rights. John Blake, CNN, "Why El Paso and other recent attacks in the US are modern-day lynchings," 17 Aug. 2019 For just as long, civil liberties groups have expressed opposition, fearing federal overreach and infringement on free speech. Ken Dilanian, NBC News, "There is no law that covers 'domestic terrorism.' What would one look like?," 9 Aug. 2019

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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Statistics for infringement

Last Updated

17 Sep 2019

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for infringement

The first known use of infringement was in 1628

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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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Comments on infringement

What made you want to look up infringement? Please tell us where you read or heard it (including the quote, if possible).


formidable, illustrious, or eminent

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