Copyright is a form of protection provided by the laws of the United States (title 17, U.S. Code) to the authors of "original works of authorship," including literary, dramatic, musical, artistic, and certain other intellectual works.
Copyright protection exists from the moment a work is fixed in a tangible form of expression (This could include a DVD, CD, even a napkin with writing on it). It is the right granted by law to an author or creator to control the use of the work created. This allows the owner of the copyrighted material to:
Copyright Law Section 107 lists various purposes for which reproduction of a work may be considered "fair", such as criticism, comment, news reporting, teaching, scholarship, and research. A Final determination on Fair Use may be made after careful balancing of each of four factors:
What not to do?