Copyright protection arises automatically when an artistic or intellectual work is created, and generally continues for 50 years after the author’s death. However, the term of copyright protection can vary based on the type of work and when it was first published. When you want to use a particular work, the safest approach is to assume that the work is protected by copyright unless there is a clear indication to the contrary or the author has been dead for at least 50 years. Works are then considered to be in the public domain.
By contrast, in the U.S. and Europe copyright generally lasts for the life of the author plus 70 years, though it can differ depending on factors such as the type of work, the manner of publication and the date of creation. Use of a work in Canada is governed by the Canadian rules for the duration of copyright protection.