Yes, I still need to post part II of promoting (I haven’t forgotten that many of you want to increase your viewership, and get yourself or your work “out there” in the public eye), but today my topic is the copyright. What it is and isn’t.
A few of the larger advertising agencies have no problem with “borrowing” creative works from individuals who have posted on facebook, or other multimedia entites.
And they’re the big boys. Many many private individuals are doing the same thing.
So can you really effectively “protect” your work? Well yes, if you have as much clout and money as the big companies do – no worries. Otherwise develop an understanding about the original work you display online, beginning with understanding what the word copyright means and what it really does.
COPYRIGHT: The meaning – The legal rights (protection), given to an individual/group/entity of original works of art or intellectual property (such as written words, music, lyrics, audio visual, audible, photography, and many other types of creations) belonging to the originator or designated owner.
So here’s the skinny: Your original work is copyrighted the second you hit the publish button for your blog or website. When the public views your work (artistry, literary, musical, or pictorial expression) it’s already been dated and copyrighted (this is understood by the law of most countries).
Stating this in another way, In the United States (and in most other countries), creative original work is automatically the copyrighted property of their creators, once completed in tangible form for the first time, without doing anything else.
The copyright symbol online is a symbolic gesture indicating to the viewer that you “own” the rights to your creations. In the case of large companies, the symbol also means you can safely assume they have lawyers standing nearby to enforce those rights.
Many people still choose to file an application and pay the fee (modest) to register work with the copyright office as added protection in case of legal disputes. But here’s the thing. As previous mentioned, if there is a legal dispute (because someone has “stolen” your original work), you will still need to hire legal representation. To sue for damages, etc.
There are several government agencies in the United States and most other countries, where you can report “stolen” creative property. And they will investigate and help to enforce copyright violations.
It is not hard to prove your original work is yours, because it’s dated and viewed publicly. If you’ve put a lot of time and money into something creative, then you should have already hired an attorney to attend to the legal details to protect your property.
In summation: Today, online, there are those people who have trouble distinguishing between “borrowing” something to put on their blog or website and “stealing” someone’s creative property.
Bottom line, it’s probably going to happen to you. That’s the understanding I’m speaking of. No one (I’ll repeat this) No one is immune from this happening to them.
With the advent of the cyberworld – who owns what, online, can get very murky. Understand this too.
Your creative property has copyright protection, but this does not mean it will not get stolen. You’re the one that decides what you want to expose to the public and what you don’t.
If you have any further questions regarding copyright laws. There is a ton of “free information” online (google it), and through government agencies.
Good luck, keep creating and understand that you are unique, if someone copies your style or an idea (you cannot copyright those things) remember that being copied is the greatest form of flattery you can have, So keep being the original you that you are!