When is my work protected by copyright?

For your work to be protected by copyright it must be original and tangible.


To be considered original, a work must be the product of your own skill and labour or intellectual creation.  It should not just be the copied work of someone else.  


Your idea must be expressed in a physical form. For example, if you compose a piece of music, it will only be protected by copyright once it is written down or recorded. In general, copyright does not apply to ideas.

You can mark your work with the copyright symbol ©, your name and the year of creation. However, copyright is applied automatically as long as certain criteria are met. Work is automatically covered by copyright unless the copyright holder chooses to give that right away.

This website refers to copyright under English Law. The current copyright legislation in the UK is the Copyright, Designs and Patents Act 1988.  Each country has its own copyright law and copyright practices can vary. You will need to ensure that you comply with the copyright laws in any other countries in which you upload or download resources.

The information contained on this website is for general guidance only and should not be relied upon as legal advice.

Category: Licensing and Copyright