For a deeper dive into copyright issues, visit the Copyright Guide. It includes sections on
You own the copyright in your work as soon as it is fixed in tangible form. Currently the copyright term for works published in the United States is life of the author plus 70 years.
Copyright is a bundle of rights conferred on the creator to incentivize the creation of new works. As codified in 17 US Code, the creator of a work has the exclusive right of
The copyright holder can give away all or any part of this bundle, and unlike physical property a right can be both given and kept. A grant, or license, for part of the bundle is sometimes called a permission. Licenses are usually granted for a particular purpose for a particular period of time.
There are some limitations and exceptions to copyright. The most well known are Fair Use and the Public Domain, though there are many others specifically outlined in 17 USC sections 107-122.
PSU Intellectual Property Policy
Under copyright law, the copyrights of works made in the course of a person's employment or specifically commissioned are owned by the employer. However, in the case of scholarly work done by faculty, the copyright is usually retained by the faculty. The PSU Intellectual Property Policy is in line with this practice, stating:
"Unless created as a Work Made for Hire, as Sponsor-Supported Intellectual Property, or as assigned in the course and scope of employment, pedagogical, scholarly or artistic works by PSU faculty, staff or students are also included as Creator Owned Intellectual Property (examples books, course materials, compositions, visual arts, dramatic works, and refereed materials). Creator-Owned Intellectual Property also includes works of students created in the course of their education, such as theses, dissertations, papers and journal articles unless otherwise designated in another PSU Policy."
For information about intellectual asset management, visit the PSU Office of Research and Engagement.