Tuesday, September 30, 2008

Reflecting on Copyright

In today's technological world, information is just a copy and paste away for millions of computer users. We have lost the definition of copyright as we can download music, art, movies and more on our personal computers. We need to be reminded of the copyright laws and be respectful of them as the consequences can be quite severe. Copyright is a form of protection for people who are authors of orignal work. The Copyright Act of 1976 provides the basic foundation for the current copyright law. It protects the rights of those who author orginal works such as literary, musical, artistic and other intellectual works. This means that limewire.com, movies-for-free.com and other shareware websites are illegally allowing people to download items that are protected by the copyright laws. So, where do we draw the line on what is truly illegal and what is legal?

For teachers and media specials, this brochure is a great resource to help clear up the cloudy air surrounding copyrights: http://www.knowyourcopyrights.org/bm~doc/kycrbrochure.pdf

For students and teachers checkout this interactive site that explains copyrights: http://www.loc.gov/teachers/copyrightmystery/#