I have professional experience at designing typefaces dating back forty years, and I recently designed a new kind of typeface for which I wrote a small user’s guide which essentially describes the keystrokes required to type each character. To protect my work from being pirated I tried to get the book & typeface copyright and the copyright office told me I can get the book copyrighted but not the typeface. There HAS to be a way for a typeface designer to protect his work, but I don’t know what it is & am trying to find out.
There is no technical way to protect the typeface. So law is the only thing that is protecting you. The font program itself (the OTF file) is protected by copyright but the resulting marks are not according to US law. This differs a bit in say Germany where even the result can be copyright too. Though realistically you can’t confine yourself only to some country.
Realistically you can not avoid piracy either, even with legal right. Don’t spend time on thinking about that.
Copyright is not a inalienable right. Although it feels so to you. There are entire industries that are in no way or shape eligible to copyright. Physical objects and fashion do not have copyright at all. So imagine coming up with a revolutionary new clothes, nope anybody can copy. So there is no reason something HAS to happen.
(I’ve always wondered why logically I as a mechanical engineer don’t get copyright on a technical drawing while a architect will? And why did I previously have to pay a copyright levy for copying my own drawing that has no copyright. But the answer is a bit banal: Legal constructs don’t have to make sense!)