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Copyright: Facts and Simple Charts


Information on this Guide


Simple Charts and Graphs

Have a Question on Copyright?

Information provided in our guide can often be confusing and hard to interpret. If ever in doubt contact Marcia Steeves the College's Academic Integrity and Copyright Officer.


Copyright provides protection for seven categories of works: Dramatic Works, Artistic Works, Musical Works, Sound Recordings, Performer's Performances and Communication Signals.

However, Copyright does not extend to facts. 

Some examples of facts include historical facts and dates, chemical structures, currency values, population numbers, mortality rates, or recorded temperatures.

Copyright does provide protection for the creative expression of facts, but not the facts themselves.

For example, if an author writes "When World Ward I began on July 18, 1914 the winds were whistling across the fields...", the fact that can be freely used is that World War I began on July 18, 1914, but the description the author used for what the day was like would be protected by Copyright.

While factual items are not protected by Copyright, you may be asked to include your references to identify the source of the fact, so be sure to provide proper citations when asked to do so in your work.

Simple Charts and Graphs


Charts SVG Example 3 - Simple Mixed ChartIt should be noted as well that simple line graphs, tables or charts would also NOT be covered by copyright specifically and may be reproduced with appropriate referencing.

Alternatively, detailed or artistic charts, images, photographs contained within works would be protected by Copyright. Fair Dealing Guidelines need to be followed to ensure the use of protected materials fall within the user rights provided in the legislation.

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