Smit & Van Wyk Patent, Trademark & Registered Designs

Public Domains

Intellectual Property Attorneys

Public domains refer to work not covered by copyright anymore. Public domains as related to literary, artistic, broadcasting, and musical products are works for which the copyright may have expired or for which no intellectual property rights exist or the copyrights have been forfeited. Some famous examples of public domains are that of Shakespeare works and music composed by Beethoven. Public domains refer to information and works which are available to the public and can be used by the public because there are no intellectual property rights attached. The first time the term was used in copyright was in 1710 in the UK. Ideas are not protected by copyright law, only the material expression of such ideas. Mathematical formulas fall within the scope of public domain, but algorithms can be protected by some intellectual property rights.

Any works created before copyright laws are in public domain. It should be noted that translations and adaptations don’t form part of public domains. If the copyright on a work expires the work can fall into public domain. Government works generally fall within public domains, unless the work is enacted into law. Public domain works form an integral part of the modern knowledge base and such should be used as sources of information. One must note that although a work is in public domain, you may still not present it as your own. You may use it, adapt it and make it available, but the work cannot be called yours unless you have substantially added onto it. Many databases exist for public domains where Internet users can locate work that can be freely copied and used without the fear of copyright infringement.

Posted on 10 May 2011
Home / Blog / Public Domains

Patent Attorneys
It is highly recommended that your claims be written by a qualified patent attorney or patent agent. The patent attorneys at Smit & Van Wyk provide a wide range of patent-related services across multiple industries and fields of technologies, including patent drafting, filing and prosecution.

Mauritius Trademarks
Mauritius trademarks recognise the Nice Classification of goods and services, and allows for multi-class filing. Mauritius trademarks are valid for 10 years from the filing date and renewable for periods of 10 years each upon payment of the renewal fee.

Franchise Attorneys
Franchising legal advice is specialised and differs from other areas of law, thus you need find yourself an attorney that specialises in this specific type of law. Franchise attorneys represent the franchisor, as well as the franchisee. 

PCT National Phase Patents
The PCT National Phase is the second of the two main phases of the PCT procedure. It follows the international phase and consists in the processing of the international application before each Office of (or acting for a Contracting State) that has been designated in the international application.