What is Copyright?
The U.S. Constitution-protected exclusive legal right, given to an originator or an assignee to print, publish, perform, film, or record literary, artistic, or musical material, and to authorize others to do the same.
Read sections 102 of Title 17 (page 24 of PDF) to (understand what copyright does and does not apply to):
Read section 106 (pages 31-32 of PDF) to understand the exclusive rights of copyright holders:
Read about Fair Use on Section 107 (p. 34 of PDF file):
Read Section 1201 (p. 265 of PDF)