An entire website dedicated to the wonderful copyright symbol. Easy copy & paste tools.
Table of Contents
How to Type Copyright Symbol on Keyboard
To enter the copyright symbol on keyboard in Windows or macOS, use these keystrokes:
(This works only on the Numpad on a keyboard – make sure NumLock is on. This copyright alt code requires the first 0, since Alt+169 on keyboard leads to the “®” character)
To enter the copyright symbol on a Mac keyboard, use this shortcut:
To enter the copyright symbol in Word, you can either:
- use the Windows or Mac shortcut above, depending on which OS you’re using
- type (C), and Word should autocorrect the symbol into the more official © copyright symbol
- or go to Insert → Symbol, then in the bottom right, for Character Code, enter “00A9”.
To enter the copyright symbol on the iPhone keyboard, tap the smiley face to open the Emoji keyboard. Then swipe through to the Symbols section, where you’ll find the copyright symbol ©.
Copyright Symbol Characters
Are you a software developer? Use these HTML special characters:
Copyright Symbol HTML Code:
Unicode Copyright Code:
Similar Characters to Copyright Symbol ⓂⒸⓒ℗®
There are many characters that look like the copyright symbol © but are distinct symbols and look slightly different. Learn about them here!
Circled Latin Capital C Ⓒ
HTML Circled Latin Capital C Symbol:
Unicode Circled Latin Capital C Symbol:
Circled Latin Small C ⓒ
HTML Circled Latin Small C Symbol:
Unicode Circled Latin Small C Symbol:
Sound Recording Copyright Symbol ℗
How it’s used: to designate copyright in a sound recording, as in CDs, audiotapes, and vinyl records. The sound recording has a separate copyright distinct from that of the underlying work.
HTML Sound Recording Copyright Symbol:
Unicode Sound Recording Copyright Symbol:
Registered Trademark Symbol ®
How it’s used: to designate a trademark thta has been registered in an official office of record (like the US Patent and Trademark Office)
HTML Registered Trademark Symbol:
Unicode Registered Trademark Symbol:
Mask Work Protection Symbol Ⓜ
How it’s used: n the semiconductor industry, to designate a “mask work,” or a 3-D pattern of material removed to create a computer chip
HTML Mask Work Protection Symbol:
UnicodeSound Recording Copyright Symbol:
Use of the Copyright Symbol
In copyright law, creative works that are copyrighted are given copyright protection. Permissions to use the copyrighted work belong to the owner. Other people cannot reproduce or sell the copyrighted work without permission of the owner.
The copyright symbol © is used to indicate clearly that the work is protected by copyright. It often appears in a phrase like “Copyright © 2019 The New York Times Company”. This copyright notice immediately identifies the copyright owner and the year of first publication.
Why is this important? Let’s say copyright infringement occurs, and the copyright owner takes the infringer to court. If the work had a clear notice, including the copyright symbol ©, the court will dismiss the defendant’s claim that he or she didn’t realize the work was protected. “The copyright symbol was right there – of course it was copyrighted!”
In the United States, before March 1, 1989, the copyright notice was actually required to copyright a work! After 1989, the United States joined the Berne Convention, which removed this requirement. Nowadays, simply creating a work automatically copyrights it, which is why you don’t see many online publishers like blgos show the copyright symbol in their text.
Did you know? “Copyright © 2019” is redundant – you only need either the word or the symbol, not both. You can also replace “Copyright” with the abbreviation “Copr.”
History of the Copyright Symbol
The copyright sign is now used internationally, but it was first created in the United States. But it wasn’t always required. In the Copyright Act of 1802, US law required a textual copyright notice on every work that wanted to be protected by a copyright. The notice was a mouthful: “Entered according to act of Congress, in the year ___, by [author], in the office of the Librarian of Congress, at Washington.”
Luckily, this notice was amended to the shorter “Copyright, 18___, by [author]” with the Copyright Act in 1874.
Our favorite copyright symbol © was introduced in 1909, and it was used only for graphic, sculptural, and image works. Here’s why it was developed: artists felt that putting the word “copyright” on the work of art itself was hideous. As a compromise, Congress passed a law allowing “Copyright” to be replaced by the letter C enclosed within a circle, thus becoming less intrusive.
A 1954 amendment then extended the use of the copyright symbol to any published copyrighted work, not just images and artwork.
But isn’t it a pain to have to put a copyright notice on every work created? And if you forgot to put it, isn’t it unfair for someone else to seize your copyright just because you forgot?
That’s why the Berne Convention decided to remove the cpyright requirement. Instead, when a work is created, it automatically gets copyright protection. This is much more logical. Still, putting the copyright notice makes copyright infringement lawsuits more airtight, as described above.