An Overview of American Copyright Law

AuthorLesley Ellen Harris
ProfessionLawyer, author, and educator
An Overview of American
Copyright Law
I always try to write on the principle of the iceberg. There is seven-eighths of it
underwater for every part that shows.
—Ernest Hemingway
The Relevance of American Copyright
Law to Canadians
If your work is being distributed or reproduced in the United States,
this chapter is pertinent since you are protected in the United States
under American copyright law.
Also, if you are employed by a U.S.
company and (physically in Canada) or are entering into an agreement
with a U.S. organization, you need to know the di erences between
Canadian and U.S. copyright law. Even where your work is not being
distributed or reproduced in the United States and/or you are not
working with or for a U.S. organization, the U.S. Copyright O ce may
be of assistance to Canadians with respect to registering and depositing
their works and searching for owners of copyright materials. In addi-
tion, much of what we read about copyright law is U.S.-based; it is
important for Canadians to be able to distinguish the U.S. copyright law
from Canadian copyright law.
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