Report: Copyright

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  Copyright Management and Control Systems: Pre-Infringement

Pre-infringement copyright management and control systems that inhibit or control infringement of intellectual property may be put into place by copyright owners before distributing their works. Examples are:


Contracts are a pre-infringement control method, which very often is underestimated. Properly formed contracts enable copyright holders to restrict the use of their works in excess of the rights granted under copyright laws.

Copy Protection

This approach was standard in the 1980s, but rejected by consumers and relatively easy to break. Still copy protection, whereby the vendor limits the number of times a file can be copied, is used in certain situations.

Limited Functionality

This method allows copyright owners to provide a copy of the work, which is functionally limited. Software creators, for example, can distribute software that cannot print or save. A fully functional version has to be bought from the vendor.

Date Bombs

Here the intellectual property holder distributes a fully functional copy but locks off access at a pre-specified date or after a certain number of uses.

browse Report:
    Intellectual Property and the "Information Society" Metaphor
-3   Linking and Framing: Cases
-2   Positions Towards the Future of Copyright in the "Digital Age"
-1   Enforcement: Copyright Management and Control Technologies
0   Copyright Management and Control Systems: Pre-Infringement
+1   Copyright Management and Control Systems: Metering
+2   Copyright Management and Control Systems: Post-Infringement
+3   Problems of Copyright Management and Control Technologies
Recent "Digital Copyright" Legislation: European Union
Intellectual property
Intellectual property, very generally, relates to the output that result from intellectual activity in the industrial, scientific, literary and artistic fields. Traditionally intellectual property is divided into two branches: 1) industrial property (inventions, marks, industrial designs, unfair competition and geographical indications), and 2) copyright. The protection of intellectual property is guaranteed through a variety of laws, which grant the creators of intellectual goods, and services certain time-limited rights to control the use made of their products.