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The Cathach of St. Columba, a seventh century book of psalms. Tradition cited it as the book whose illicit transcription by St. Columba in 560 A.D. led to the overturn of an Irish copyright ruling by force of arms.
- “Copyvio” redirects here. For the Wikipedia term, see Wikipedia:Copyvio.
Copyright infringement (or copyright violation) is the unauthorized use of material which is covered by copyright law, in a manner that violates one of the original copyright owner’s exclusive rights, such as the right to reproduce or perform the copyrighted work, or to make derivative works that build upon it. The slang term bootleg (derived from the use of the shank of a boot for the purposes of smuggling) is often used to describe illicitly copied material.
For electronic and audio-visual media, unauthorized reproduction and distribution is occasionally referred to as piracy or theft (an early reference was made by Alfred Tennyson in the preface to his poem “The Lover’s Tale” in 1879 where he mentions that sections of this work “have of late been mercilessly pirated”). The legal basis for this usage dates from the same era, and has been consistently applied until the present time. Critics of the use of the term “piracy” to describe such practices contend that it unfairly equates copyright infringement with more sinister activity, though courts often hold that under law the two terms are interchangeable.