Answered By: Matt Laidlow
Last Updated: Jun 10, 2024     Views: 3

How does copyright apply to data?


Data and factual information (e.g., rainfall or temperature measurements, mortality rates, population numbers, currency values, chemical structures, historical facts and dates, the number of Twitter followers someone has) are not protected by copyright. Additionally, simple and typical visualizations such as line graphs and tables (see example below) are often not creative enough to be eligible for copyright protection. These types of material may be able to be copied and used without permission.

Accumulated Precipitation over One Week for Calgary

Some types of more creative research products that might be used in a similar way to data (e.g., photographs, audiovisual recordings, detailed diagrams and charts, collections of text mined from websites or publications) are most likely protected by copyright.

Image credit: Graph generated at https://acis.alberta.ca/weather-data-viewer.jsp 

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