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IOP Science

What is copyright?

Copyright protection applies automatically to any original work as soon as it is written down or put into permanent or fixed form; for example, pictures, photos, figures, text, graphs, videos. There does not need to be a © symbol next to the work for it to be protected by copyright.

Copyright generally lasts for 70 years after the death of the author of the work (or the last remaining co-author’s death). Therefore, just because the work is old, does not mean that it is not protected by copyright.