Legal Jargon

When do you need permission of the copyright owner (that’d be me)?

You need permission of the copyright owner if you wish to use all or any substantial part of work which is copyright. (With or without a copyright notice).

A substantial part is an important, essential or distinctive part of the work. Remember everybody’s view on what is important, essential or distinctive varies.

You need permission of the copyright owner to:

  • Reproduce or copy the work (some exceptions apply to research or personal use)
  • Communicate that work to the public – including fax, email or use on the internet
  • Perform the work in public
  • Adapt, publish, rent or re-broadcast

If you find that you need to use a piece of material and you can’t find the copyright owner there are a number of collecting societies that can help you. The most common society is Copyright Agency Ltd, www.copyright.com.au

Australian copyright law: How to protect your work