published work

Definition from Nolo’s Plain-English Law Dictionary

When copies of a copyrighted work are made available to the public on an unrestricted basis. Both published and unpublished works are entitled to copyright protection, but some of the rules differ. For example, the duration of a copyright in an unpublished work made for an employer (a work made for hire), or an anonymous or pseudonymous work, can last up to 25 years longer than if the work were published.

Definition provided by Nolo’s Plain-English Law Dictionary.