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Copyright and Plagiarism: Copyright

Information for authors, researchers, and faculty looking to publish scholarly works and join the scholarly communication community.

Copyright Basics

The US Copyright Office defines Copyright as:

"(a) Copyright protection subsists, in accordance with this title, in original works of authorship fixed in any tangible medium of expression, now known or later developed, from which they can be perceived, reproduced, or otherwise communicated, either directly or with the aid of a machine or device. Works of authorship include the following categories:

(1) literary works;

(2) musical works, including any accompanying words;

(3) dramatic works, including any accompanying music;

(4) pantomimes and choreographic works;

(5) pictorial, graphic, and sculptural works;

(6) motion pictures and other audiovisual works;

(7) sound recordings; and

(8) architectural works.

(b) In no case does copyright protection for an original work of authorship extend to any idea, procedure, process, system, method of operation, concept, principle, or discovery, regardless of the form in which it is described, explained, illustrated, or embodied in such work."(i)

Copyright is usually a grouping of rights, which gives authors the exclusive right to do and to authorize others to do the following:

"(1) to reproduce the copyrighted work in copies or phonorecords;

(2) to prepare derivative works based upon the copyrighted work;

(3) to distribute copies or phonorecords of the copyrighted work to the public by sale or other transfer of ownership, or by rental, lease, or lending;

(4) in the case of literary, musical, dramatic, and choreographic works, pantomimes, and motion pictures and other audiovisual works, to perform the copyrighted work publicly;

(5) in the case of literary, musical, dramatic, and choreographic works, pantomimes, and pictorial, graphic, or sculptural works, including the individual images of a motion picture or other audiovisual work, to display the copyrighted work publicly; and

(6) in the case of sound recordings, to perform the copyrighted work publicly by means of a digital audio transmission." (ii)

Copyright is transferrable only in writing.

Copyright lasts from the time of a work’s creation, during the life of the author, plus 70 years after the author’s death. Explore the "Copyright Term and Public Domain in the United States" guide developed by Cornell University to learn more about how to determine copyright status of works:

(i). US Copyright Office:
(ii) US Copyright Office:

Reused from LMU's Scholarly Publishing LibGuide by Jessea Young

Copyright for Educators

Know Your Copy Rights

Copyright Considerations

The College recognizes the intellectual rights of others and considers copyright violations illegal, unethical, and morally wrong. We concur that everyone who requests a reproduction assumes the professional duty and responsibility to do his/her utmost not to violate the Copyright Law. When requesting the reproduction of printed material that is copyrighted, observe the following policies:

1. Individuals requesting reproduced copyright material must sign a statement that the material to be reproduced does not violate the Copyright Law.

2. Individuals requesting reproduced copyright material obtain permission of the author, composer, or publisher and provide documentation of the approval.

3. No material will be reproduced to the detriment or financial loss of the author, composer, or publisher. This policy intends to preclude damage to the copyright owner or holder.

4. When reproducing approved material, credit the author, composer, or publisher of reproduced material.

5. Consult the Faculty Library Guide or email an IRSC Librarian at for additional information or guidance.

6. Courses and supporting materials developed by faculty while employed by Indian River State College are the property of the College, which holds copyright on the material. The College will utilize the revenue derived from the creation and production of software/course materials.  Materials include, but are not limited to,

  • Digital course ownership,
  • Electronic course materials,
  • Web page design,
  • Text and graphics, and
  • Web page content.



Downloading/sharing copyrighted material from IRSC computers without the author’s permission violates the U.S. Copyright Law and IRSC’s acceptable computer use policy.