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Copyright Law

Practice Area Collections

The three major legal databases each have a specific page dedicated to Copyright Law or Intellectual Property.  These Practice Area Collections pull together all of the secondary sources and primary law available in each database.  This can be a great starting point.



In Print


The copyright laws are codified in Title 17 of the U.S. Code.  The first federal copyright statute was enacted in 1790, and comprehensive revisions were enacted in 1831, 1870, 1909, and 1976.  The current copyright law is the Copyright Act of 1976, as amended.

Online sources include:

Legislative History

To compile a legislative history for copyright legislation, you can use general legislative history sources (see the LibGuide on Federal Legislative History for instructions).

Other sources that provide the full text of legislative history documents include: