It used to be that in order to be afforded any copyright protection, one
needed to put the world on notice by attaching a copyright notice to the work.
While this is no longer the case, it is still customary to attach a copyright
notice on copyrighted works in order to be eligible for certain types of
damages. In the copyright notice below, notice the four elements that include
the copyright symbol, the term "Copyright", the year of copyright, the name of
the copyright holder, and the phrase "All Rights Reserved".
Click on an element in the copyright notice below.
The term "Copyright" is technically not required in the copyright notice.
However, it should be noted that the term "Copyright" may now be used in lieu
of the © Copyright Symbol in the U.S.
The © Copyright Symbol is generally the standard identifier of a Copyright
Notice. This symbol is required in many foreign countries in order for
copyright protection to attach.
However, in the United States, the term "Copyright" may now be used in lieu of
the Copyright Symbol. This makes notification on ASCII documents much easier to
It has pointed out that HTML (both 2.0 and 3.0) uses the ISO 8879:1986 "Latin
1" character set by default, which includes the C-in-circle symbol at position
169. In theory you are supposed to be able to use the numeric entity reference
© to display the C-in-circle. In practice, however, a number of browsers
(especially text-based ones like Lynx, operating via terminals using the IBM PC
character set, for example) will not properly display the C-in-circle on screen
in response to that entity. Furthermore, HTML 3.0 adds a symbolic ©
entity, and Netscape (of course) has had its own nonstandard &copr; entity
for a while.
Consequently, the recommendation is that any Web copyright notice use BOTH the
numeric entity and the full word "Copyright" to avoid as many of these problems
Whenever a Copyright Notice is given, it is required that the year of
publication be included in the notice.
The Copyright Notice must also include the name of the owner of the copyright.
The legal owner of the copyright is not necessarily the author or creator of
the work. Works created by employees in the course of their employment or
independent workers who sign "Work for Hire" agreements are considered to be
creating the work on behalf of the employer. Consequently, these works are
referred to as "Works for Hire", and the copyright is vested in the person
doing the hiring.
As an example, news stories that you receive through a news service such as
ClariNet are generally copyrighted by the news provider, whether it be UPI,
Reuters or Associated Press. The reporters who actually write the stories are
generally working under Work for Hire agreements.
You can thank Bolivia and Honduras for this one. In order to gain copyright
protection in these countries, you must follow the requirements of the Buenos
Aires Convention. This Convention requires that the reservation of rights
phrase be included in the Copyright Notice in order for copyright protection to