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Copyright

What's in the Public Domain?

Public domain works are not restricted by copyright and do not require a license or fee to use.

Material has had:

  • Copyright expired
  • Copyright owner failed to follow renewal rules
  • Copyright owner deliberately places the work in the Public Domain
  • The type of work is not protected

Currently, the default term is life of the author plus 70 years.

  • All works published in the U.S. before 1923
  • All works published with a copyright notice from 1923 through 1963 without copyright renewal
  • All works published without a copyright notice from 1923 through 1977
  • All works published without a copyright notice from 1978 through March 1, 1989, and without subsequent registration within 5 years

Public Domains Collections