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Copyright Protection

Thomas Strong, P.L.S.

Course Outline

This course covers the importance of protecting maps and drawings by using copyright. It details each step the professional needs to take in order to copyright their drawings. This course includes a multiple-choice quiz at the end, which is designed to enhance the understanding of the course materials.

Learning Objective

At the conclusion of this course, the student will:

Intended Audience

This course is intended for design professional and land surveyors

Benefit to Attendees

Attendee of this course will be able to effectively copyright their drawings, maps and other professional prepared products.

Course Introduction

More than most professionals, surveyors and design professionals run the risk that their work will be used for something other than was intended. This happens for example when a plan drawn for title insurance purposes is later used as a base plan for architectural design or a mortgage loan inspection plan is later used for building fences along property lines, or architectural plans are copied and distributed.

These problems may be alleviated by the use of a copyright.

What is copyright? The United States Copyright Office defines copyright as " a form of protection provided by the laws of the United States to the authors of original works of authorship, including literary, dramatic, musical, artistic, and certain other intangible works."

In October 1976, President Ford signed into law the Federal Copyright Act of 1976, which can be found at Title 17, United States Code. The Copyright Act provides copyright protection to original works of authorship fixed in any tangible medium of expression from which they can be perceived, reproduced, or otherwise communicated. Included among the several areas defined, as works of authorship are pictorial, graphic, and sculptural works. It is under this category that the Copyright Act protects maps and surveys.

The Copyright Act gives exclusive right to the maker of the copyrighted document to reproduce the document, prepare derivative works from the copyrighted document, distribute copies of the document, and display the document publicly. Any one exercising any of these exclusive rights, has infringed on the owner's copyright.

Course Content

The link to the course content is as follows:

Copyright Protection (PDF file 49 KB)

You need to open or download the above document to study this course.

Course Summary

Land Surveyors often overlook the possibility of adverse possession in their daily work. This oversight can be a dangerous way to practice, since adverse possession may be in effect on any given boundary line at any time. The surveyor needs to be on guard if he is to protect himself from unnecessary liability with respect to unwritten title conveyances.


Once you finish studying
the above course content,
you need to take a quiz to obtain the PDH credits.

Take a Quiz

DISCLAIMER: The materials contained in the online course are not intended as a representation or warranty on the part of PDH Center or any other person/organization named herein. The materials are for general information only. They are not a substitute for competent professional advice. Application of this information to a specific project should be reviewed by a registered architect and/or professional engineer/surveyor. Anyone making use of the information set forth herein does so at their own risk and assumes any and all resulting liability arising therefrom.