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For more information about copyright terms and for help in determining if a work is still protected by copyright, see:
This site is intended for informational purposes only. Library staff members cannot give legal advice. For legal advice, you should contact an intellectual property attorney.
The term of a copyright depends on a number of factors, including the image's publication status and the date of first publication. Because copyright law has changed throughout the years, copyright terms vary.
Generally, the following rules apply:
- Not published (e.g., snapshots): Life of the author plus 70 years
- Published before 1923: Copyright protection has expired; the work is in the public domain
- Published without a copyright notice between 1923 and 1977: Copyright protection has expired; the work is in the public domain
- Published between 1923 and 1963 and copyright not renewed: Copyright protection has expired; the work is in the public domain
- Published between 1923 and 1963 and copyright was renewed: 95 years after first publication
- Published after 2002: Life of the author plus 70 years
Questions? Need help? Ask a Librarian
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