here is some more legal blurb for us to chew over..
So how long does UK copyright last?
Copyright in a literary, dramatic, musical or artistic work (including a photograph) lasts until 70 years after the death of the author. The duration of copyright in a film is 70 years after the death of the last to survive of the principal director, the authors of the screenplay and dialogue, and the composer of any music specially created for the film. Sound recordings are generally protected for 50 years from the year of publication. Broadcasts are protected for 50 years and published editions are protected for 25 years.
For copyright works created outside the UK or another country of the European Economic Area, the term of protection may be shorter. There may also be differences for works created before 1 January 1996. Kickstart 1.3 = 1987 and Kickstart 3.1 = 1993 wasn't it?
This is worth including as it applies to work that copyright has expired. If a literary, dramatic, musical or artistic work or film for which the copyright has expired has never been made available to the public, it may be protected by publication right. This is granted automatically to the first person to make a relevant work or film available to the public within the European Economic Area, lasts for 25 years from the time of making available, and gives rights broadly similar to those given by copyright.
US International Protection
The United States has copyright treaties with most countries throughout the world, and as a result of these agreements, each country respects the copyrights of the others. Currently, a U.S. copyright is honoured in 190 countries around the world.
(however its worth noting that although copyright is honoured, the duration of the protection will be different.)
Fair Use - US
Under U.S. Copyright law, “fair use” of a copyrighted work is allowed for the limited purposes of non-commercial comment, criticism, news reporting, scholarship, classroom use, or research and is not an infringement of copyright.
Specific UK information regarding software copyright
Software code is considered literary work as such it would be bound by the literary, dramtic, musical or artists works
For literary, dramatic, musical or artistic works
70 years from the end of the calendar year in which the last remaining author of the work dies.
If the author is unknown, copyright will last for 70 years from end of the calendar year in which the work was created, although if it is made available to the public during that time, (by publication, authorised performance, broadcast, exhibition, etc.), then the duration will be 70 years from the end of the year that the work was first made available.
Exceptions to Copyright - UK
There are some limited exceptions to copyright - these do not give rights to use copyright material, they simply state certain activities do not infringe. These include limited use for non-commercial research and private study. Copyright is infringed where either the whole or a "substantial part" of a work is used without permission, unless it falls within one of the exceptions. A substantial part can mean a "qualitive" significant part. This means that even a small portion of the whole work can still be a "substantial part".
Fair dealing is a term used to describe acts which are permitted to a certain degree without infringing the work, these acts are:
- Private and research study purposes.
- Performance, copies or lending for educational purposes.
- Criticism and news reporting.
- Incidental inclusion.
- Copies and lending by librarians.
- Acts for the purposes of royal commissions, statutory enquiries, judicial proceedings and parliamentary purposes.
- Recording of broadcasts for the purposes of listening to or viewing at a more convenient time, this is known as "time shifting".
- Producing a back up copy for personal use of a computer program.
- Playing sound recording for a non profit making organisation, club or society.(Profit making organisations and individuals should obtain a license from PRS for Music.)
So if that lot hasn't melted your brain or contemplating swallowing your own tounge ? (you may need professional help =D)
Tell you what - lets establish that the root to this argument here is the Amiga Kickstart (software on IC medium) that is really the only thing Amiga inc owns (other than some flagging useless trademarks)
So the AmigaKick Start
- 1. It is covered in the US by copyright law, as such has atleast 70 years copyright protection under a literary work.
- 2. The US copyright may not completely apply in some countries and terratories and its duration of protection will differ.
- 3. In the UK foriegn copyrights outside the EU have a lesser protection duration (I am researching this bit)
- 4. Question: is Kickstart 3.1 a published edition of 3.0, if so would that mean its copyright is limmited to 25 years?
lots of food for thought me thinks, we need a fully versed Copyright/IP lawer =)