How do you get something copyrighted?

Copyright protection: when is my work protected?

From, last update on: May 17, 2021

Do you write texts, compose music or create photos and videos? In this case you are available as Originator Rights to these Works to. These result from the Copyright Act (UrhG) and serve to spiritual creations to protect. But how does one come about Copyright protection and how long does it last?

Copyright FAQ

When does copyright protection arise?

Copyright protection arises automatically with the creation of the work. The copyright exists for a maximum of 70 years.

Are there any costs associated with copyright protection?

Since there is no examination, registration or official filing, there are no costs for the protection of copyright. The situation is different with patents or trademarks.

What alternatives are there if my creation does not enjoy copyright protection?

For example, if a logo does not meet the requirements for copyright protection, it is possible to have it registered as a trademark. For products or inventions, for example, a patent can be applied for. However, commercial legal protection requires registration with the German Patent and Trademark Office (DPMA) and is associated with costs.

Copyright protection - a definition

Artists, creatives and scientists invest a lot of time and energy in the Creation of their works. In addition, they often fall during the creative process costs in a not inconsiderable amount. This one commitment - regardless of the form - the Legislatorby telling the author of his work special rights admits.

This Copyright protection ensures, among other things, that only the Creator of a work may determine when this released and thus an interested audience made accessible becomes. In addition, he can use moral rights on the Recognition of his authorship exist and a corresponding Author designation desire.

The Copyright protection also aims to ensure that the originator has a reasonable remuneration when third parties receive their Use works. Such Recovery is generally only permitted if the Originator this agree. In most cases a so-called "Contract on the transfer of usage rights" set up, which also agreements for compensation contains.

In addition, existing copyright protection entitles the Rights holder to oppose the illegal exploitation defend his works. The UrhG secures the creator various in the event of a copyright infringement Expectations to, which can be asserted, for example, in the course of a warning.

What is copyrighted?

Which creative achievements as protected under copyright law Works apply, results from the UrhG. A look at Section 2 (1) UrhG reveals that in particular the Works of literature, science and art counting. The differentiates Legislator basically between the following types of work:

  1. Works of language such as written works, speeches and computer programs
  2. Works of music
  3. pantomime works including works of dance art
  4. Works of fine arts including works of architecture and applied arts and designs of such works
  5. Photographic works including works that are created similar to photographic works
  6. Cinematographic works including works that are created similarly to cinematographic works
  7. Representations of a scientific or technical nature, such as drawings, plans, maps, sketches, tables and plastic representations

So a plant but is actually subject to copyright protection, it must be a personal spiritual creation act. The legislator defines for a corresponding assessment concrete criteria.

So the work must come from a personal activity emerge and made by humans be. This also means, among other things, that for pictures, which painted by animals was, or for fully automatic machine created products no copyright protection consists.

In addition, such a creation must have a intellectual content feature. So it can't just be one purely craft item act. The protection by copyright is subject to the concrete rendering of an idea, so the one that is worthy of protection applies way how something is presented.

Last but not least, copyright protection is applied to a certain extent Individuality and creativity advance which stands out from everyday design. In this context, lawyers speak of the so-called Height of creation.

Whether a text or a drawing Copyright protection criteria can usually be met do not assess across the board. Therefore, in particular, legal disputes due to copyright infringement a Review of the respective individual case necessary.

How long does copyright protection last?

The copyright protection arises in Germany basically with the creation of the work. An application in a register, as is the case with trademarks and Patents is necessary, is therefore absent in copyright law. This automatic copyright protection however also means that a work Not in advance on the fulfillment of the legal criteria checked becomes.

The UrhG comes with the Originator in relation to his work various privileges. For example, he can determine who owns his Creation in which way use can and against a unlawful use take legal action. However, the legislature only grants these rights to one person limited period.

So is the copyright in his Limited duration. However, the laws usually define this no specific year, but make the copyright protection period from Date of death of the author dependent. In Section 64 UrhG it says:

Copyright expires seventy years after the author's death.

After this Author's death the copyright is therefore for a period of 70 years on whose Inherit above. This is where the Deadline according to ยง 69 UrhG to the next full calendar year. The heirs can then use the Publication and exploitation of the copyrighted works.

The Time limit for copyright protection serves in particular Generality and should one creative progress enable. Because works in the public domain - as creations whose protection has already expired are officially designated - often form the Basis for new works.

How can you get a work protected by copyright?

As mentioned earlier, one is Registration or an official deposit in a personal spiritual creation unnecessary, so that there is copyright protection. Because this is already with the Completion of the work in front.

However, this is enough automatic copyright protection many rights holders do not, as here for example a Evidence is missingexactly when a work was created. This fact can be relevant in particular if it is in the course of a Copyright infringement about that original and the illegal copy to determine.

It may therefore be appropriate to use a Deposit with the notary to consider. The notarization the deposit can then be used in legal disputes proof act.

Copyright protection - short and compact

The Copyright protection results from the German law UrhG and protects the author in his personal and property relationships to his work. This protection arises according to copyright with the Emergence of spiritual creation, one Registration or official deposit it is therefore not necessary for this.

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Copyright protection: when is my work protected?
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