Copyright and intellectual property

Closely linked to issues around Academic Integrity and Misconduct are the principles around Copyright and Intellectual Property. It is important that you have an understanding if your rights and responsibilities in relation to both of these.

According to the World Intellectual Property Organization (n.d., p. 2) "intellectual property refers to creations of the mind: inventions; literary and artistic works; and symbols, names and images used in commerce."

In Australia, the Copyright Act 1968 governs the use of certain forms of intellectual property including:

  • artistic works: paintings, sculptures, drawings, photographs, architectural models
  • dramatic works: plays, film scripts, choreography
  • literary works: journal articles, computer programs, poems, song lyrics, novels, tables of statistics
  • musical works: compositions, sound recordings
  • television and radio programs
  • films.

Copyright protects the way ideas and information are expressed, not the idea or information itself (Australian Copyright Council, 2014). In Australia, inventions (patents), trademarks, and industrial designs are protected by other areas of law such as the Patents Act 1990 and the Designs Act 2003.

Further reading on copyright