"Copyright" is a set of exclusive rights regulating the use of a particular expression of an idea or information for a fixed period of time. The symbol for copyright is ©, and in some jurisdictions may alternatively be written as either (c) or (C). Copyright includes a wide range of creative, intellectual, or artistic forms or "works," such as poems, theses, plays, other literary works, movies, choreographic works (dances, ballets, etc.), musical compositions, audio recordings, paintings, drawings, sculptures, photographs, software, radio and television broadcasts of live and other performances, and, in some jurisdictions, industrial designs.

Copyright law covers only the form or manner in which ideas or information has been manifested. It is not designed or intended to cover the actual idea, concepts, facts, styles, or techniques which may be embodied in or represented by the copyright work. Patent and Trademark laws may impose legal restrictions on reproduction or use where copyright does not. Copyright laws are standardized through international conventions such as the Berne Convention in some countries and are required by international organizations such as European Union or World Trade Organization from their member states.