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What Are the Software Copyright Responsibilities?

As the computer program or software consists of a set of instructions, it falls under the category of literary work

Introduction – Software Copyright Responsibilities

Many software developers and companies protect their software, programmes from infringement using Software Copyright. Copyright is the authorised protection to the makers, inventors of literary, artistic, dramatic, and musical works by the law. It also includes protection for sound recordings and cinematographic films. As the computer program or software consists of a set of instructions, it falls under the category of literary work. Moreover, according to The Indian Copyright Act, 1957, section 2 (O), you can register computer programs, software, mobile applications for Copyrights. In this blog we’ll learn about Software Copyright Responsibilities.

Types of Software Licenses

The penalties for the violation of a copyright license are based on the type of software license you have acquired. 

There are two types of software licenses,

  1. Free and open-source code licenses &
  2. Closed source code licenses.

Copyright Registration in India

Free and Open Source Code Licenses

The open-source code licenses allow the end-user to view, edit and share (up to a restricted extent) the software and its coding without any charges. Additionally, it is further divided into three categories 

Public Domain

It is the most lenient type of software license. When your software is under the public domain, an end-user can edit and use the software without any restrictions. Examples of public domain software copyrights are SQlite, I2P, CERNhttpd.

Permissive Licenses

These licenses contain minimum necessities for software modification or sharing. It is also known by other names as BSD style or Apache style. Examples of permissive licenses are MIT License, MPL License.


These licenses allow you to edit or modify the licensed code and share it under the original software copyright license. Further, copyleft software copyrights examples are GPL Licenses, AGPL Licenses, CC-BY-SA.

Closed Source Code Licenses

These licenses are usually bought and sold. They do not allow any modification, edits, distribution of the program, or software. They are also known as proprietary licenses.


Shareware licenses fall under the category of closed source code licenses. It allows you to download licensed software, the program for a certain time. And if you like the product you can buy the licensed copy.

Software Copyright Responsibilities

Below given are the Software Copyright Responsibilities-

  • The software copyright validates, protects the work (in the form of software code, program, graphic design) of a software developer. But the Copyright Act cannot protect ideas, facts, techniques of execution. The responsibility of software copyrights is to protect how you implement, express those ideas to bring out some output
  • The end-user usually pays the rental for the right to use the software code but cannot own the actual code, when the software is licensed. When you have a valid license to use the software (source code), it will impose certain regulations to use it. 
  • Some permit you to use the code on a fixed number of devices with a fee Moreover, it is the responsibility of the software copyright to monitor the permissible number of devices that are using the software
  • Further, prevention of misuse of software, program, source code is the responsibility of software copyright
  • Additionally, software copyright is responsible for the transfer of technology in an ethical way
  • Monitoring the territory and duration (including the validity of license) of the usage of the software.

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FAQs On Software Copyright Responsibilities

How does software copyright work?

Copyright is used by software developers and companies to prevent unauthorized copying, sharing of their software. Copyright holders can appeal legal and technological actions to avoid and punish copyright infringement. Reuse or modification of licensed software can be done by prior permission, paying the royalties (if required) to the owner of the software. Moreover, as the licensing process requires the copy source code, program. It is helpful for the validation of the software.

How long does copyright last on software?

The duration (by default) of the software is 5years and can extend throughout India. Additionally, you can specify the duration of assignment and territory of license as per your requirement at the time of the application process.

What is software copyright design prevention?

Software copyright includes symbols, logos, words, or designs that are used as a trademark. Use of such license designs (Trademarks) prevents the Indian Copyright Act.

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