Chapter 1 -- Copyright in Context

Copyright law is a pervasive feature of our information society, and its role and effect on the ordinary lives of citizens are often the subjects of heated debate. Our present law is derived from a set of rules first adopted in the eighteenth century, when no one could foresee either the extent to which information technologies would evolve or the role that information industries would eventually play in the national and global economies. The materials in this chapter situate U.S. copyright law in its theoretical, historical, and global contexts.

Part A -- The Theoretical Underpinnings of Copyright Law
A collection of the articles cited in part A.
Part B -- The History of U.S. Copyright Law
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Part C -- The Role of International Treaties and Institutions
This copyright convention dates to 1886, but the U.S. did not join until 1989.
The Agreement on Trade Related Aspects of Intellectual Property Rights (TRIPS), enforced by the World Trade Organization (WTO).
Supplemental Material For This Chapter
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Cases Deleted From Previous Editions
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