Copyright in published editions

The typographical arrangement of a published edition made on or after 1 August 1989 is protected by copyright under the Copyright, Designs and Patents Act 1988 provided that certain criteria are met.

The typographical arrangement of a published edition made before 1 August 1989 may be protected by copyright under earlier legislation.

What is a published edition?

A “published edition” is published edition of the whole or any part of one or more literary, dramatic or musical works. A newspaper will constitute a published edition, although individual articles in the newspaper may be protected by copyright separately as literary works.

The design of a typeface contained in a published edition may also be protected by copyright separately as an artistic work.

How long does copyright in a published edition last?

Copyright in the typographical arrangement of a published edition expires at the end of the period of 25 years from the end of the calendar year in which the edition was first published.