Are computer program buttons protected by any IP law? For example, if you look above when you post you see all those function buttons. Did the person who made the software for this site have to get permission to use them? Or are some buttons more equal than others, meaning that some are free to use but some are protected? For example, the "erase" button with a chalkboard eraser wouldnt be copyright protected because it isn't original and their are only so many ways to represent a button. However, some of the buttons you find on apple programs are only used in apple programs. Does that mean those Apple buttons are protected?