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All About The Copyright Disclaimer Under Section 107

What is a copyright disclaimer ?

A copyright disclaimer is the declaration of any person using a copyrighted work in the form of reproduction, thereby affirming that the reproduction is legally protected under Section 107 of the United States Copyright Act, 1976  (the Act). It also includes the relevant details of the source (copyrighted work) of content used in such reproduction.

The very purpose of adding a copyright disclaimer to any reproduction is to send a message to the readers or viewers that the reproduction does not infringe the copyright of the original work. 

It is usually seen in websites, downloadable files, blogs, videos, etc. 

Types of copyright disclaimers

Below are the types of copyright disclaimers: 

  • Warranty copyright disclaimer
  • Investment copyright disclaimer
  • Confidentiality copyright disclaimer
  • No-responsibility copyright disclaimer
  • Views-expressed copyright disclaimer
  • Fair use copyright disclaimer

Requirements for copyright disclaimers

It is pertinent to note that copyright disclaimers are used only when a copyrighted work is reproduced. In the first place, any work is given copyright only if it satisfies the following requirements:

Expression: Mere ideas cannot be copyrighted. 

Fixation: The ideas expressed/ fixed in the form of any tangible medium can only be copyrighted.  

Uniqueness: A work must contain a substantial amount of creativity to be eligible for copyright. Furthermore, mere facts, small phrases, etc., are not copyrightable. 

Copyright Disclaimer Under Section 107

A copyright disclaimer under Section 107 of the United States Copyright Act, 1976 (Copyright Act) states that a person can use a copyrighted work without the copyright owner’s permission under specific conditions. Such unauthorised use of copyrighted material is permitted under the Copyright Act when its usage falls in the ‘fair use’ category, which would otherwise result in copyright infringement.

A copyright disclaimer is used when someone uses a copyrighted artwork, images from a TV show or movie, lines from a book or any original work in his/her own work. A fair use of copyright disclaimer states that he/she does not own the copyright but is using the copyrighted material under the fair use clause. 

The copyright disclaimer under Section 107 of the Copyright Act allows the fair use of copyrighted material for the following purposes:

  • Education and research 
  • Scholarship
  • Criticism
  • News reporting
  • Comment
  • Teaching

A copyright disclaimer provides legal and non-licensed citations of copyrighted material in another author’s work. The following factors should be considered while determining if a copyrighted disclaimer comes under the fair use clause:

  • The character and purpose of the use, including if it is used for commercial or non-profit educational purposes
  • The nature of the copyrighted work
  • The ratio between the amount and substantiality of the work used with the entire copyrighted work
  • The effect of the reproduction of work on the potential market or the value of the copyrighted work

The purpose of adding a copyright disclaimer to a reproduction work is to show viewers or readers that the reproduction does not infringe on the original copyright work. It is usually put in blogs, websites, downloadable files, videos, etc.

Everything there is to know about the copyright disclaimer under section 107?

Features of Copyright Disclaimer

The following are the features of a copyright disclaimer:

  • It provides the source of the reproduced work to the readers or viewers 
  • It protects the legal right of the copyrighted work
  • It helps to specify the scope of obligation and rights enforceable in a legally recognised relationship
  • It protects the particular views/creativity expressed by the original author
  • It helps to take proactive measures to ensure the legal rights to Intellectual Property Rights (IPR)

Process of Adding Copyright Disclaimer

Below are the processes involved in adding a copyright disclaimer statement to a reproduced work:

Mention the publication year

The copyright disclaimer statement must mention the year of the publication. The year of issuance of work by the author through sale or lease should be clearly mentioned.

Mention the name of the copyright author

The copyright disclaimer should mention the name of the copyright holder and the exact description of the author’s work that is used in the reproduction.

Use copyright symbol

In the copyright disclaimer, the copyright symbol © should be incorporated. The word ‘copyright’ can also be used to show that a part of the reproduced work is copyrighted.

Attach copyright disclaimer in a visible place

The copyright notice should be placed or attached in a visible place in the segment of the reproduced work. A copyright notice is usually located in the footer of a website, bottom of a written piece of music or on a few pages of a book.

Include the rights statement

The copyright disclaimer statement should contain the right statement (fair use clause) to show what rights a copyright owner is holding. A fair use clause informs the readers or viewers of the reproduced work that though a copyrighted material is used for fair use, anybody who wants to use the material for any purpose other than the one mentioned under Section 107 must obtain the permission of the copyright owner.

Copyright Disclaimer India

The concept of ‘fair use’ of copyright originated in the United States under the Copyright Act. However, a similar principle exists in other common law jurisdictions. In India, the concept of fair use of a copyright is provided under Section 52 of the Copyright Act, 1957. It provides that a person can use/reproduce the copyrighted work by adding a copyright disclaimer. The copyrighted work, when reproduced for fair use for the below purposes, does not amount to infringement:

  • Private or personal use
  • Research
  • Criticism
  • Review
  • Reporting of current events and affairs

The copyright disclaimer can be used to reproduce a copyrighted work in a legal manner. If a person does not add a copyright disclaimer for using a copyrighted work, it will amount to infringement. The copyright disclaimer also protects the creative pieces of writers and artists by allowing their work to be used under a fair use clause.

How Auriga Accounting Helps In Copyright Registration ?

However, Auriga Accounting Private Limited can assist individuals and businesses in various ways when it comes to copyright registration:

  1. Financial Records Preparation: Auriga Accounting can help gather and organise financial records related to the creation and ownership of the copyrighted work. This information might be needed during the registration process.

  2. Cost Analysis: Auriga Accounting can assist in determining the costs associated with creating the copyrighted work. This information might be relevant for copyright registration and related tax purposes.

  3. Tax Implications: Auriga Accounting can advise on the tax implications of owning copyrights, especially if the copyrighted work generates income. They can help in understanding tax deductions and obligations related to copyright revenue.

  4. Business Structure: For businesses involved in creative work, accountants can advise on the appropriate business structure (e.g., sole proprietorship, LLC, corporation) concerning copyright ownership.

  5. Royalty Management: If the copyrighted work generates royalties, Auriga Accounting Private Limited have best accountants, that can help manage and track these payments. They can ensure that the creators receive the appropriate compensation and that the income is reported correctly for tax purposes.

  6. Compliance and Reporting: Auriga Accounting can assist in ensuring that the business or individual complies with all financial reporting requirements related to the copyrighted work, including tax filings and royalty reporting.

It’s important to note that while Auriga Accounting private limited can provide valuable financial guidance, the legal aspects of copyright registration should be handled by intellectual property attorneys or experts in copyright law. These legal professionals can guide individuals and businesses through the complexities of copyright registration, rights protection, and infringement issues