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ERIC Number: ED296381
Record Type: Non-Journal
Publication Date: 1988-Jul
Pages: 36
Abstractor: N/A
Reference Count: N/A
ISBN: N/A
ISSN: N/A
Copyright Protection for Computer Software: Is There a Need for More Protection?
Ku, Linlin
Because the computer industry's expansion has been much faster than has the development of laws protecting computer software and since the practice of software piracy seems to be alive and well, the issue of whether existing laws can provide effective protection for software needs further discussion. Three bodies of law have been used to protect software: (1) trade secret and contract (effective protection if the software is a secret); (2) patent (the equivalent of a monopoly on a computer program); and (3) copyright. The Copyright Act of 1976 and the Computer Software Copyright Act of 1980 have both served to give some protection to computer software, but the issue of proving the copyright owner's rights have been infringed upon is still a problem. Several traditional and non-traditional tests have been developed to show substantial similarity between the copyrighted work and the pirated version, all of which are problematic. Two factors must be given attention when considering whether increased copyright protection should be given to software: any interpretation of the copyright statute should (1) not exceed principles suggested by legislative and judiciary history; and (2) not put too much emphasis on the copyright owner's economic interests, which will only impose a high cost on society. (One hundred and twenty-four notes are included.) (MS)
Publication Type: Speeches/Meeting Papers; Information Analyses
Education Level: N/A
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Identifiers - Laws, Policies, & Programs: Copyright Law 1976