According to the Canadian Intellectual Copyright Office, the following apply;
1 – What is a copyright?
In the simplest terms, “copyright” means “the right to copy.” In general, only the copyright owner, often the creator of the work, is allowed to produce or reproduce the work or to permit anyone else to do so.
2 – What is covered by copyright?
Copyright applies to all original, dramatic, musical, artistic and literary works (including computer programs). It also applies to performances, communication signals and sound recordings.
3 – Infringement
A copyright gives you the sole right to produce or reproduce your work, through publication, performances and so on, or to authorize such activities. Anyone who does such things without your permission is infringing, that is, violating, your rights. Naturally, if you publish, perform or copy anyone else’s work without their permission, you are infringing their rights.
One specific form of infringement is plagiarism. This is copying someone else’s work and claiming it as your own. An obvious example would be taking a novel that someone else wrote and publishing it under your own name (or pen name). In this case,
A perfect example would be taking control of a web site that had not been paid for and changing the copyright statement in the footer of the web site, when in fact, they did not create the site nor did they pay the invoices due and outstanding for the right to claim copyright to the site.
Plagiarism can also entail using a substantial part of someone else’s work. An example would be copying a novel, and simply changing the title and names of the characters. Another example would be removing the Copyright from a web site and placing your own name on it to claim ownership.
4 – Ownership
Generally, if you are the creator of the work, you own the copyright. However, if you create a work in the course of employment, the copyright belongs to your employer unless there is an agreement to the contrary. Similarly, if a person commissions a photograph, portrait, engraving, or print, the person ordering the work for valuable consideration is the first owner of copyright unless there is an agreement to the contrary.
The consideration must actually be paid for the copyright to belong to the person commissioning the photograph, portrait, engraving, or print (or in this case – web site).
Also, you may legally transfer your rights to someone else, in which case, that person owns the copyright.
5 – Duration
Copyright in Canada protects “intellectual” as opposed to “physical” property. One difference between intellectual and physical property is that ownership of physical property, such as a boat or a toaster, is perpetual. One continues to own physical property until it is given away, sold, consumed or destroyed.
Ownership of intellectual property, like copyright, is different. Copyright ends at a legally defined point in time. These points in time are set out in rules in the Copyright Act. There is one general rule and many special rules that apply to certain kinds of works.
6 – General rule
The general rule is that copyright lasts for the life of the author, the remainder of the calendar year in which the author dies, and for 50 years following the end of the calendar year. Therefore, protection will expire on December 31 of the 50th year. After that, the work becomes part of the public domain and anyone can use it.