You may be considering having your work protected by copyright. But what categories are not eligible for copyright protection under the Copyright Act 1968 (Cth)?

What is Copyright?

In the simplest terms, copyright is a group of rights that are granted exclusively to your creative work. Copyright protection is generally afforded to numerous types of works including books, paintings, sketches, blueprints, scripts, storyboards, sound recordings (voice or musical), graphic designs and building models or sitemaps. Copyright protection enables you to reproduce the material and, if applicable, the right to perform or show the work publicly. A couple of things to note are that copyright exists immediately once you create a work and is free. That means you will not have to register the creative work because it is automatically protected as soon as the material has been produced into writing or film etc.

What is not protected by Copyright?

The good news is you will not have to go through the trouble of registering the work for copyright protection with any organisation. But what types of creative works are excluded from copyright protection? Basically, copyright protection does not apply to concepts, ideas, techniques or styles. For copyright protection to apply, you must prove that you expressed your idea or concept physically or digitally. For instance, your idea for a new novel will not be protected by copyright, but if you have written a draft, it will be eligible for copyright protection. Similarly, the overall ‘sense’ of a creative work is generally not protected by copyright.

Also, it is important to understand that copyright is different to property rights. An individual may physically own a piece of artwork or photograph, for instance, but that does also not mean that they also own the copyright of the work unless it has been expressly assigned.

Names, Slogans and Titles

Generally, names and slogans are too insignificant to warrant copyright protection. Single phrases or headlines, for instance, are unlikely to be protected.

A Person’s Image

Usually, people and their image is not protected by copyright. However, depending on the circumstances, other areas of law may apply such as consumer law.


In summary, the key consideration here is whether you have translated your ideas into a material form (physical or digital). If you have for example, created a storyboard of your new film concept, copyright protection generally exists. If you have simply formed an idea in your mind, however, it is not eligible for copyright protection. Therefore, if you are in the initial stages of developing your new creative work, it is best to keep that information to yourself for the time being! You would deeply regret having someone else profit off of your own idea merely because you told them about it.

What does this mean for me?

When dealing with your creative works and the associated copyright protection, it is best to seek the legal advice from a specialist IP lawyer. This will ensure your works are properly protected by copyright, giving you legitimate legal standing if infringements do occur.

A lawyer at LegalVision will gladly assist you with your copyright protection, so do not hesitate to call us 1300 544 755.

COVID-19 Business Survey
LegalVision is conducting a survey on the impact of COVID-19 for businesses across Australia. The survey takes 2 minutes to complete and all responses are anonymous. We would appreciate your input. Take the survey now.

About LegalVision: LegalVision is a tech-driven, full-service commercial law firm that uses technology to deliver a faster, better quality and more cost-effective client experience.

The majority of our clients are LVConnect members. By becoming a member, you can stay ahead of legal issues while staying on top of costs. For just $199 per month, membership unlocks unlimited lawyer consultations, faster turnaround times, free legal templates and members-only discounts.

Learn more about LVConnect

Lachlan McKnight
Need Legal Help? Get a Free Fixed-Fee Quote

If you would like to receive a free fixed-fee quote or get in touch with our team, fill out the form below.

  • By submitting this form, you agree to receive emails from LegalVision and can unsubscribe at any time. See our full Privacy Policy.
  • This field is for validation purposes and should be left unchanged.
Our Awards
  • 2019 Top 25 Startups - LinkedIn 2019 Top 25 Startups - LinkedIn
  • 2019 NewLaw Firm of the Year - Australian Law Awards 2019 NewLaw Firm of the Year - Australian Law Awards
  • 2020 Fastest Growing Law Firm - Financial Times APAC 500 2020 Fastest Growing Law Firm - Financial Times APAC 500
  • 2020 AFR Fast 100 List - Australian Financial Review 2020 AFR Fast 100 List - Australian Financial Review
  • 2020 Law Firm of the Year Finalist - Australasian Law Awards 2020 Law Firm of the Year Finalist - Australasian Law Awards
  • Most Innovative Law Firm - 2019 Australasian Lawyer 2019 Most Innovative Firm - Australasian Lawyer
Privacy Policy Snapshot

We collect and store information about you. Let us explain why we do this.

What information do you collect?

We collect a range of data about you, including your contact details, legal issues and data on how you use our website.

How do you collect information?

We collect information over the phone, by email and through our website.

What do you do with this information?

We store and use your information to deliver you better legal services. This mostly involves communicating with you, marketing to you and occasionally sharing your information with our partners.

How do I contact you?

You can always see what data you’ve stored with us.

Questions, comments or complaints? Reach out on 1300 544 755 or email us at

View Privacy Policy